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Can Mental Health Stigma Ever Be Removed?; And Should It?

Posted by Vybz Queen on October 11, 2019 at 7:50 PM Comments comments (0)

This article was taken from Loop News: 

Removing the stigma of mental health


Most Jamaicans see mental illness as taboo and often dump off their relatives who suffer from the illness at the Bellevue Hospital in Kingston and forget they ever existed.


Mental illness carries a stigma.


But if Minister of Health and Wellness, Dr Christopher Tufton has his way that stigma will be removed and Jamaicans will start accepting the mentally ill among us as their own. To be loved and cared for.


“We need to raise awareness. Four out of ten people will be affected by mental illness in their lives,” Tufton said.


He was speaking during a World Mental Health Day Mental Forum under the theme Speak Up, Speak Now, at the Bellevue Hospital in Kingston on Thursday.

Tufton had earlier presented 14 Toyota buses to mental health staff to bolster their outreach programme and said the move was geared at getting mental health staff into communities to sensitise the public and administer treatment to affected individuals.


“This will improve mobility. We want the community response to be stronger,” he said.


Also, Tufton said the health ministry is presently training additional psychiatrists and teaming up with non-governmental organisations to further boost the country’s health care capabilities.

At present, there are patients at the Bellevue Hospital who have never seen their relatives since the day they were admitted.

Like Earl Cargill who has been a patient for 45 years. Cargill fell ill in 1974 and has never left the hospital since.


“We need to more on reintegration. We are embarking on a major reform on mental health care. Mental health is a lot more common than most people think. People who are at Bellevue want to live a normal life too,” the health minister.

The article ends here. 

My question is, can mental health stigma ever be removed? ; and should it? There is a vast array of mental health diseases, some more severe than others. Many of them can be treated using medication while some are terminal and chronic.  The truth is medication can be pretty expensive especially when it is required daily over the course of someone's life. While I don't support family members being dumped into public facilities one has to understand what the family is up against. 

Caring for someone who is mentally ill is extremely taxing depending on the condition and its severity. A lot of mentally ill individuals are extremely dangerous and we have all seen multiple news reports of them attacking and even killing innocent people. I believe the stigma needs to somewhat be removed however it must be done cautiously. Better facilities need to be put in place where healthcare can be easily accessible and the necessary medication provided free of cost. There also needs to be stronger community outreach so families can understand that they are not alone and won't feel burdened thus lessening the instances of them abandoning their relatives in mental health facilities. 

I sincerly hope the Minister is successful in his mission and that he receives the necessary support so that his task is executed efficiently. I do hope however, that they do a case by case analysis as many persons suffering are a danger to themselves and others and do need to be institutionalized. 

What are your thoughts on the situation at hand and do you support the Minister of Health in his mission?

Should Football Season Be Postponed Due To Lightning Strikes?

Posted by Vybz Queen on October 5, 2019 at 12:55 AM Comments comments (23)

Jamaica has been undergoing some severe weather conditions lately which has led to an increase in flood reports and road damages.  Most notably though are the reports of football players being hit by lightning over the course of the last two weeks. This is quite serious and it doesn't seem as if it is being considered as such.

Jamaica places high importance on Football, it is praised and revered and a huge part of the culture and lifestyle. However, without players there can be no game. Shouldn't the lives of the players be held at a higher standard than the game itself. I believe that ISSA needs to postpone all games until the weather permits. Whether it takes two weeks or a month or two months, the games should be postponed until Jamaica is in the clear in terms of the inclement weather we have been experiencing.

Many persons will not agree but they need to think about the situation. Some of the players are still hospitalized following the incidents. Read below for two news stories about the lightening strikes and then share your thoughts with me. Let me know if you believe these occurances warrants the postponement of the football season or if you believe these are one off situations. Is it a case that they aren't monumental enough to see the football season being postponed? Are there suitable safety measures in place such as lightning detectors? 

According to Jamaica Observer: 

A Jamaica College (JC) player has been rushed to hospital after a bolt of lightning struck during their ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup fixture against Wolmer's Boys' School at Stadium East a short while ago.

The player, Terrence Francis, was taken to the University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI).

It is understood that the incident occurred in the 84th minute of the contest, when four players collapsed — two from each team.

Referee Karl Tyrell called off the contest and the four players were attended to, but Francis's condition appeared more serious.

Jamaica College's Head Coach Davion Ferguson confirmed the unfortunate situation and told Jamaica Observer Online that the JC second player later complained of chest pains and was prepped to be taken to the hospital, also.

The article ends here. 

According to Loop News: 

Another student was rushed to hospital after being struck by lightning at an ISSA/Digicel Manning Cup Group A match on Tuesday between Haile Selassie High School and the visiting Cumberland High.

The incident happened minutes after the game was called off in the first half as a result of heavy rain. 

Competitions Officer of the Inter-Secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA), George Forbes confirmed the incident. However, Forbes could not say whether the affected student was a player.

"I have received a report that a student was struck by lightning while sitting on a chair," Forbes said.

Just two weeks ago, five players were affected in a similar incident at a Group F Manning game between Wolmer's Boys and Jamaica College at the Stadium East Field.

Two players - one each from both schools - were taken to hospital in that incident.

The article ends here. 

Let me know your thoughts in the comments below. 

Women Rent Two Babies To Get More Attention While Begging On The Streets

Posted by Vybz Queen on September 27, 2019 at 10:50 AM Comments comments (23)

This world that we live in is truly a crazy place. I recently read an article about two women who rented out two babies so they could garner more sympathy while begging on the road. This is beyond me. I have so many questions. Why would the mothers rent their children out in the first place? How much money could someone give you that you would do something like that, and if it was a substantial amount then they didn't need to be on the road begging.

My other grievance with this is something that is prevalent in Jamaica. The article states that the women are in their 30s and 40s, so why don't they go and find proper work? So many people sit down and depend on other people to take care of them. Going on the road and begging people for their hard earned money, I cannot understand it. Hats off to the police men who noticed the situation and did their investigation. The women were arrested and the children are now in the custody of the state. I'm not sure if that is a positive or a negative but if their parents were willing to rent them out then hopefully being in the state's custody they will be better off.

I hope the trial results in both women and the mothers serving jail time. Then again being in jail is just sitting comfortably and getting fat off tax payers money. So I take that back, they should be sentenced to hard labour. Read the article below and tell me what you think in the comments.

The article begins here: According to Loop News.

Two Kingston women who were charged with breaching the Child Care and Protection Act after they rented two small children to help them beg money from passers-by, are to return to the St Ann Parish Court on October 3.

The women, 34-year-old Shakarta White, unemployed of Fourth Street, Kingston 12, and 41-year-old Lavern Thomas, also of Fourth Street, have been charged with (unlawful) begging and cruelty to a child.

The women were remanded in police custody when they appeared in court on Tuesday.


The St Ann police reported that law enforcers saw the two women with two children - a one-year-old girl and an eight-month-old baby boy - begging money from persons in St Ann's Bay on Friday, September 20.


The women were eventually arrested and following a probe, it was discovered that the children were not related to the women.

Further investigations revealed that the women had allegedly rented the children from their biological mothers to help them beg on the streets.

According to the police, the mothers of the children have been located and served with summons to also appear in court on October 3.

The children are presently in the care of the state.

Children's Advocate, Diahann Gordon-Harrison, has commended the St Ann police for their quick action in apprehending the women who were reportedly begging with the little ones.

The article ends here.

Please tell me what your thoughts are on this. My heart goes out to the two small children. It's an unfortunate situation.

To Snitch Or Not To Snitch?

Posted by Vybz Queen on September 21, 2019 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (22)

Its a tale as old as time, snitches get stitches. 

Rapper Tekashi 69 has been all over social media lately due to his presence in a trial against his former gang members. Everyone seems to have an opinion stating would they or would they not snitch to get a lesser sentence. The rapper has been severely mocked and criticized by fans as well as other rappers.  If you were in his shoes, what would you do? 

The trial of Nine Trey Blood Gang members, Anthony “Harv” Ellison and Aljermiah “Nuke” Mack began on Monday, September 16th. Ellison is also being charged for the 2018 kidnapping and robbery of Tekashi69. Throughout the trial, the rapper has gone into extensive detail regarding the inner workings of the Nine Trey Blood gang. He has also identified members and given specific information surrounding their illegal activities which included drug distribution and shootings. The rapper has also incriminated himself stating that he attempted to have fellow rappers Trippie Redd and Casanova shot. He also confessed to involvement in the shooting of rapper Chief Keef.

The "FeFe" rapper has shockingly name-dropped rappers Jim Jones and Cardi B stating that they are known Blood gang members. He is now referred to as Snitch9. However he is receiving sympathy from some fans due to recent developments which proved his fellow gang members kidnapped him and tried to extort money from him. Tekashi's role in the gang was to be their bank. He funded their gang activites and upon deciding to stop they retaliated. Now are these people that you would remain loyal to? 

After getting arrested last year November on gun and racketeering charges the rapper secured a plea deal to get his possible 47 year sentence reduced to time served. It doesn't seem that he took part in actual gang activites so he can't be called a gangster. Many have been blaming him saying he should have known what he was getting into, however when faced with life behind bars what would you do? 

This can even be translated to other matters, if you see your friend's man with a different woman do you talk? If you catch your friend cheating on an exam, do you talk? 

Everyone can pass judgement when the shoe is on the other foot. If you were facing life in prison would you snitch on your friends, family, loved one? Be honest. Share your thoughts on this media blowup below. 

The Bahamas Devastated By Hurricane Dorian, Jamaicans Claim They Are Undeserving Of Our Help

Posted by Vybz Queen on September 14, 2019 at 12:25 AM Comments comments (22)

The Bahamas was recently completely destroyed by Hurricane Dorian which penetrated the island for almost two days. Hurricane Dorian tore through the island, destroying everything in her path. The storm rampaged the Bahamas with Category 5 winds up to 185 mph (295 kph) and relentless, unyielding rains, flooding neighborhoods and destroying or severely damaging properties and infrastructures. Preliminary estimates are that nearly half the homes in Abaco and Grand Bahama, which have 70,000 residents and are known for their beautiful marinas, lush golf courses, and all-inclusive resorts have been completely destroyed. Officially the death toll is at 50, but that number is expected to rise with estimations being in the hundreds. It is reported that 1,500 people are still missing.

Numerous videos and photos of the utter and complete disaster circulated all over social media and on several news outlets. The Bahamas has since then received an outpouring of support from all over the world, including Jamaica. However, many Jamaicans seem to be quite upset with the attention that the Bahamas is getting from Jamaicans. Stating that if the shoe were on the other foot they would not be so quick to reach out to either support or help us. Persons have been stating that Jamaica has its own issues so we should not be wasting our time praying for the Bahamas.

In times like these though, when there is a natural disaster shouldn't persons focus on the situation at hand instead of thinking of past grievances. Do you think that Jamaica should or should not assist the Bahamas with relief efforts? Do you believe that they are undeserving of our prayers? Would you personally volunteer to assist?


It seems so many Caribbean countries hate one another. Why is this so? What is your opinion on this?

Share your thoughts on this issue with me in the comments below.

Cops Stage Fake Arrest For A Marriage Proposal

Posted by Vybz Queen on September 6, 2019 at 10:05 AM Comments comments (23)

These days all we see in the news are sad, heartbreaking stories. It has become very depressing. Sometimes these stories involve members of the police force and they are often seen in a negative light. Such as officers beating people, or spraying people with pepper spray or being prejudiced to car stunt drivers. 

Therefore it is quite pleasing to me to see a video of cops portrayed in a more positive manner. I found this video regarding two officers who staged a fake arrest to assist a man in proposing to his girlfriend. It's very interesting and quite creative. There are however some persons who say that it is unprofessional for the officers to use goverment resources in that manner. They are calling for the officers to be disciplined. Others stated that the men are wasting valuable time that could be used to help civilians in need. After watching the video, go ahead and share what you thought of the whole staging in the comments below. 

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