Mental health care system in crisis

If you’ve read The Soloist, you are aware of how disabling mental illness can be to lives full of promise. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) recently released Grading the States, a report card on the U.S. public mental health care system for adults. The analysis is based on 65 specific criteria such asContinue reading “Mental health care system in crisis”

The economy and gender discrimination

Most people are well aware that unemployment continues to rise to its highest levels in 25 years, above 8% nationally and approaching 11% in California. What is less apparent is that this rise is not evenly distributed for men and women. About 14 months ago, men and women had the same level of unemployment (aroundContinue reading “The economy and gender discrimination”

Countering discrimination through education

LA Times reporter Corina Knoll provides a touching tale in her article, “Thanking her for opening my eyes,” of how important teachers can be in shaping how we view others and the world. She explains how Iowa schoolteacher Jane Elliot helped her third grade class understand the dynamics and consequences of racism in the wakeContinue reading “Countering discrimination through education”

“The Soloist” on 60 Minutes

In case you need any more encouragement to read “The Soloist” by Steve Lopez, check out the piece Morley Safer did on 60 Minutes this week on the relationship between Mr. Lopez and Mr. Ayers . It’s a nice piece, but trust me, read the book for a more complete story.

Review of “The Soloist” by Steve Lopez

We have a general rule of thumb in our household that before seeing a movie, we try to read the book on which it is based.  (By the way, this has proved to be a great motivator for our son to plow through the Harry Potter books).  You may have recently seen the trailer forContinue reading “Review of “The Soloist” by Steve Lopez”

Health, Wealth and History

One of the most poignant moments in the most recent presidential campaign came during the second debate in discussing health care. The town hall format debate was full of the usual equivocating and double-speak of presidential debates and the campaign in general, and both candidates offered vague, stump-speech responses to an audience member’s question aboutContinue reading “Health, Wealth and History”

Progress in Addressing Homelessness in Los Angeles?

“Los Angeles” is often thought of as synonymous with “dysfunctional” when it comes to addressing homelessness. In a post for the Funders Together: Homelessness Ends Here Blog I highlight the quiet, but significant, systemic changes being made toward ending homelessness in Los Angeles County. We still have a long way to go, but it isContinue reading “Progress in Addressing Homelessness in Los Angeles?”

Homeless children: a national disgrace

The National Center on Family Homelessness NCFH today released a report outlining the extent of homelessness among children in the U.S. In America’s Youngest Outcasts: State Report Card on Child Homelessness, NCFH researchers found: More than 1.5 million children are homeless annually in the United States—one in every 50 American children. 42 percent of homelessContinue reading “Homeless children: a national disgrace”

The Great Disruption

As economic indicators continue to worsen, people from all walks of life are personally feeling the effects of the recession. Unemployment continues to rise as layoffs spread and businesses fail. Public resources continue to be thrown at corporations deemed too-intertwined with our financial system to collapse. Retirement accounts shrink as the stock market plunges. DemandContinue reading “The Great Disruption”