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NEEDS OF THE MENTALLY ILL OUGHT TO BE A HIGH PRIORITY

It was with great shock, disappointment and dismay that I read in The News about the plans to consider using more than 50 acres of land at the Buffalo Psychiatric Center for non-mental health purposes. Although I support community enhancements, developing cultural and educational resources at the expense of treatment for the mentally ill is frightening.

It is indeed a sad state of affairs when a higher priority is given to museums and parking lots than appropriate services for the mentally ill. Mental-health professionals, family members, friends, clients and all those who take seriously our obligation to provide for all members of our society should view the proposed use of Buffalo Psychiatric Center land as a call to action.

Let us not become a community where a low priority is given to the treatment needs of the mentally ill. How easy it is for some to trample on the rights of those who often are unable to speak for themselves.

JOAN MUEHLBAUER

Town of Tonawanda

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