Like most people in our nation, I believe we need a comprehensive approach to reducing gun violence; one that includes the enactment of reasonable gun laws as part of an overall strategy to keep our kids safe. Tragically our political system has failed to deliver on this time and time again and kids are dying as a result.
Today too many politicians blame mental illness for every shooting and use it as an excuse to do nothing about the gun side of the equation. The result is tragedy.
There is a lot we can do to stop the carnage; an approach that better addresses both mental illness and guns could make a real difference. Unfortunately, the NRA playbook doesn’t seem to allow for that. And too many politicians are following that playbook- blaming mental illness, doing nothing.
So to those with the power to enact change: We’re tired of excuses; we want action and we want it now. It’s time to come together as adults who owe it to our children to make their world a better, safer place. It doesn’t need to be this difficult.
I have called on Governor Walker and Speaker Ryan to pass the following common sense reforms to make sure dangerous people don’t have access to dangerous weapons:
Stephanie Wilson Miller
The effects of mental illness are far reaching, affecting classrooms, families, and workplaces. Dane County is stepping up and increasing our commitment to get help to those in need and address mental health challenges.
Launched in 2013, our school based mental health teams are now making a difference for hundreds of students and families across Dane County. These teams of mental health professionals are available to help if a mental health crisis occurs but also to work with students and teachers to identify students struggling with mental illness before it becomes a crisis.
After hearing from school districts, teachers and parents of the success of the teams we have been working to locate more funding to help more school districts. In my 2017 budget every school district that wants a team in their district will have one.
We must continue to work with our schools and families to get kids the help they need and allow teachers to focus on teaching. Our schools cannot do it all, the county, the non-profit sector and families must all help make sure our next generation of young minds is being given the opportunity to succeed. I am proud to help further Dane County’s commitment to the next generation.
Dane County Executive
This fall I introduced my 2017 budget An Investment for Our Future . It makes unprecedented investments in compassionate services for our most vulnerable residents , infrastructure critical to continued economic vitality and safety, along with a quality of life that creates an environment where families and businesses can flourish.
This budget is a clear statement of the priority Dane County places on green energy – harnessing the power of the sun to run our facilities and capturing naturally occurring bio-gas, converting it into millions of dollars of revenue to sustain services – and mitigating and adapting to the challenges of a changing climate.
2017 will be Dane County’s cleanest, greenest budget ever. I am proposing more than $2 million in new solar development, more than doubling all of county government’s total solar energy production portfolio next year alone. While the state continues its inaction on climate change, Dane County will lead the way by creating an Office of Climate Change and Energy that will coordinate efforts across the county.
My Human Services budget totals over $294 million and includes new and expanded efforts to address barriers to our young people learning and their families succeeding. Together with Madison School District we are creating a fourth Mental Health Crisis Team for the school district to ensure all four high school attendance areas have dedicated groups of professionals focused on the needs of our young people.
The efforts this budget undertakes reflect the values we hold so dear. Good wages, educational achievement, reducing economic and racial disparities, improved mental health, cleaner waters and conservation, safer roads for both cars and bikes, and housing for those who have fallen on hard times.
For more information on Dane County’s 2017 Budget go to: https://countyofdane.com/exec/budget.aspx
Dane County Executive
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