Pay now or later

Posted: Tuesday, June 24, 2003

My congratulations to Valerie Kelly for years of professional services in the mental health field and for her contribution to Tongass Community Counseling Center.

Funding mental health services is definitely a luxury item reserved for upbeat economies. So with the loss of funding to the batterers program at Tongass Community Counseling Center, I'm not surprised that TCCC is closing its doors.

I'm certain that at least a few of the men who would have benefited from the batterers intervention counseling offered at TCCC will eventually re-offend and find themselves residing in the state run bed and breakfast at Lemon Creek. Thus, the money "saved" by not funding batterers counseling will be spent funding batterers' room and board. In addition, more funding will be needed to pay for victims' services.

In theory, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In practice, it would seem that we'd rather spend money for a pound of prison than an ounce of counseling.

Brett Wilcox


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