We Need to Stop Stigmatizing – Ron’s story

He sat there, a rum and coke in one hand, and a revolver in the other, ready to pull the trigger and end his life.

Ron Campbell was suicidal. He was sabotaging his own life and his family’s, so no one would miss him when he was gone. But Ron got the help he needed before it was too late - but so many do not.

Newly retired, Ron now dedicates his life to talking about PTSD and other mental illnesses, any chance he gets.

For 24 years, Ron worked in various departments of the RCMP. He was an expert in crisis negotiation and mediation. He was no stranger to high-stress and often violent situations, including one where his colleague and friend was killed in the line of duty.

He also saw the darkest sides of poverty in his day-to-day work, because in many cases, the people he was called out to help were living in it – and they were desperate.

“We can be productive, we’re not broken toys,” he explains. “We need to stop stigmatizing and start helping those who need it.” Ron is committed to a healthier, stronger community and feels that everyone, regardless of income, should have access to mental health care and support.

Stress is a part of life. But a life in poverty is full of stress. This can lead to family struggles, abuse, and even addiction and crime. As families and individuals try to find their way out, toward a better life, it takes a tough toll that’s physical, emotional and mental. Each year, over 500,000 Albertans access at least one mental health service.

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