How we treat our old, our sick and our mentally unwell reflects on us as a nation. How we treat our elderly will in turn be reflected in how we will be treated when we grow old.
Regarding the issue of illness, whether physical or mental, as a nuisance and a ‘drain on resources’ can be but a short step to regarding it as a problem to be solved, not as a vulnerable person needing assistance. We need to look to ourselves and ask whether we want a properly funded health service and whether we are prepared to pay for it.
Above all we must ask ourselves whether we are prepared to stand up and be counted when it comes to defending it. It should not be left to the unions to defend a resource that the majority of us will access at some stage during our lives. It is a responsibilty that we must all be prepared to shoulder.