Governor Snyder shifts focus from guns to mental health
Governor Rick Snyder Photo: Detroit Free Press
Caroline MacGregor January 25, 2013 | WGVU
One group protesting outside the Amway included the "We Are Michigan Coalition", angry with what they consider attacks
on families by Governor Rick Snyder for decisions he made on right-to-work, the
environment, and women's and pensioners rights.
Inside the Ambassador Ballroom, Governor
Snyder talked for about 20 minutes touching briefly on topics like education,
jobs, upgrading the state’s infrastructure, increasing the use of renewable
energy and the need to develop a land use strategy before moving on to
questions from the audience.
his relentless positive action motto, Governor Snyder said people in Michigan
need to work together to avoid being viewed as the state where people are constantly
fighting with each other.
talk, I sat down with the governor and asked him about two controversial hot
topics: guns and mental health. With
regards to proposed legislation to exempt guns made and sold in Michigan from
federal gun restrictions that some view as a way to attract gun manufacturers
to the state, and the controversy over assault weapons, the governor shifted the
“Again, I, uh, view it as, I don't, uh, I haven't taken a public position on that other than to say that again, the second amendment is important and my focus isn't to say I'm not sure that should be the huge dialogue coming out of Connecticut - I still come back to say the main issue there is you had someone who was clearly disturbed and shouldn't we be looking at ways to deal with their disturbed nature. Again, going to the question of, more or less, guns isn't the place to run right now versus saying this was a disturbed person, lets deal with that.”
And with his
focus on addressing mental health and huge gaps in the system Snyder wants to
look at expanding Medicaid and improve delivery of service.
“There appear to be some good programs that involve getting some fairly concise training to identify symptoms and immediate response kind of situations. I describe it as kind of learning how to do CPR but for mental health and I think that would be a very good thing because again in a CPR situation you never expect it necessarily and all of a sudden someone could have a heart attack but you've gone through a two to four hour course of the basics so you know what to do until a first responder comes.”
budget presentation on Feb 7th, Governor Snyder expects to tackle the
issue of expanding mental health coverage but will face an uphill battle from
some Republicans including Senator Bruce Caswell who just introduced a bill to
stop expansion of Medicaid eligibility.
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