Tuesday, March 7, 2017

COUNCIL MEETING #2




As anticipated there were again numerous speakers against the “seizure” addition to the present Taxi Cab Ordinance which is on the second reading agenda.

Tolliver did make several pertinent comments and did suggest that instead of this Ordinance they amend the present one to increase the number of licenses. So the companies in North Plainfield could legitimately pick up in Plainfield.

Rivers after her expected oration did suggest that this Ordinance be tabled next Monday. That is a worthwhile suggestion although better yet would have been not to approve its presence on the business meeting agenda.

My opinion is that the entire Ordinance be scrapped since (1) it limits the number of cab license to 1 for each 1000 residents or 50. Since it was adopted when the demographic makeup of this city was more affluent and less people depended on cabs for transportation it does not reflect today’s conditions. (2) Ideally since both politically separate Plainfield and North Plainfield are intimately connected as economic units would not a joint policy better serve both communities?

I was intrigued by the concept of the proposed Stigma Free City” resolution which although it had not yet been written was moved to next Monday’s agenda. Therefore I cannot comment on the resolution itself.

However it is unfortunate that people still go back to the dark ages when it was not understood that thought that psychiatric problems those afflicted with psychiatric problems had a disease like kidney failure, diabetes, heart disease that needed medical treatment.

Instead people felt that those individuals were possessed by the devil and are to be feared.

The result is that even in today’s enlightened era those afflicted even with what are minor problems are afraid of public reaction to them and tend to hide and not seek treatment.

Worse yet neither governments nor insurance carriers provide adequate funding to provide proper facilities or adequate payment for treatment either inpatient or ambulatory outpatient. Hospitals prematurely discharge patients to outpatient care because their insurance benefits run out.

It is too bad that Storch the author of the resolution left shortly after the discussion presentation on Stigma Free. Cities

He did write in his Feb/26 blog: “Psychiatric problems affect 1 in 5 people. When you count the impact on their families, employers, teachers and friends, it becomes clear that everyone is touched by mental illness in one way or another.

Stigma often comes with mental illnesses. That's because there are many myths that cause fear and shame about conditions like depression, phobias, bi-polar illness and schizophrenia . The fear leads to discrimination. The shame is the leading reason people do not seek help for their psychiatric problems. The real shame is while treatments have been proven effective, untreated mental illnesses cause huge negative impacts in our community - on families, on businesses, on the many people struggling with these conditions.”

I await to read the resolution.

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