Will Van Derveer: Election: Prop 122 would legalize promising mental health treatment
As a Colorado psychiatrist who has treated people with post-traumatic stress disorder and depression for over 20 years, I was dismayed to see state representative Judy Amabile suggest in her guest opinion: “For mental health, vote ‘no’ on Proposition 122, “that passage from Proposition 122 – which would create the Natural Medicine Services program – would do anything but positively impact the Colorado mental health crisis. For many Colorado residents, passing this measure could change – and even save – their lives.
Prop 122 creates a state-regulated therapy system to allow adults over the age of 21 to access natural psychedelic medicine under the guidance of a licensed and supervised facilitator at designated healing centers and health facilities such as palliative care. State health authorities would have the power to study, authorize and regulate treatment and it would remain illegal to sell natural psychedelics.
Johns Hopkins, NYU, UCLA and other first-rate research institutes around the world are publishing groundbreaking results showing psilocybin as an effective mental health treatment for those who have run out of treatment and lost hope. And clinical studies show that psilocybin’s safety profile is excellent.
The current treatments we have for severe mental health problems don’t work very well for too many people. Those who are struggling and have unsuccessfully tried all the pills and therapies available to cope with their depression and PTSD should have access to the kind of treatment approaches that work for them so that they can heal. Colorado peers and their families dealing with PTSD and depression, who have tried everything and continue to suffer, know all too well: the need to access therapeutic tools, such as psilocybin, to resolve these conditions is at a crisis level.
Will Van Derveer, MD, Longmont
Michael Belochi: Library District: The district could be an expensive and forced library membership
I own a small business in Boulder, BOCO Cider, and will vote “no” on 6C.
It seems to me that the public library must answer to elected officials and follow the same budgetary procedures as other valuable services. Measure 6C of the ballot aims to make the public library system independent on the shoulders of renters, homeowners and businesses through increased property taxes. This unnecessarily damages the affordability of housing because we already have a large library.
Right now, the public library is a Boulder City department, similar to police, transportation, parks, etc. The city council and its staff provide supervision, management and financing. Funding comes mainly from sales tax receipts. Ballot Measure 6C seeks to eliminate all of this and create a self-governing council funded by a nearly $ 19 million property tax increase. Commercial properties end up paying 4 times the increase over residential properties!
What’s next, should we create an independent district for the Boulder police or road maintenance?
Boulder Library champions aren’t just good people, they’re great people with their hearts in the right place. However, positioning the library on a pedestal with respect to affordability and small business support doesn’t work for me. I see it as an eternal, expensive and forced library membership.
Michael Belochi, Boulder
Lynne Popkowski: Election: Weiser has long defended women’s rights
The government is not in the examination room with a woman and her doctor. Dobbs’ decision made everything ok and since then states have imposed abortion bans that have put the lives of women and girls at risk.
Our Attorney General Phil Weiser has long defended Roe v. Wade and a woman’s constitutional right to a safe and legal abortion.
In a post-Roe world, we need Phil in the Attorney General’s office more than ever, providing an unshakable barrier against the damaging and regressive dams opened by the recent Supreme Court decision.
I am grateful to the Colorado state legislator for passing the Reproductive Health Equity Act and Phil’s pledge to defend it, as I fear his opponent’s statement of support for Dobbs’ decision and perhaps the end of the constitutional right to legality and safety. . abortions and all its implications for our communities.
Phil has pledged to sue any county that attempts to block access to abortion and defend any person sued by another state for providing or receiving an abortion in Colorado.
Our rights do not belong to the auction block to be sold to the Republican highest bidder.
We have witnessed the parody of forced pregnancy in states across the country and have seen its devastating impact on girls as young as ten. We need to re-elect Attorney General Phil Weiser on November 8 to ensure Colorado is never among them.
Lynne Popkowski, Littleton