Lethbridge-West UCP candidate questioned by NDP over stance on mental health

Karri Flatla announces her campaign kickoff on February 13. Global News

Lethbridge-West UCP candidate Karri Flatla is drawing criticism from the NDP over her stance on mental health.

In an email to media outlets Friday, the NDP highlighted a tweet from 2011 from Flatla’s acocunt that said: “Still no evidence that depression is a disease. Yet billions of big pharma drugs are sold every year to ‘cure’ it.”

A tweet posted by Karri Flatla in 2011.
A tweet posted by Karri Flatla in 2011.

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The NDP are calling Flatla’s views, “out of touch and concerning.”

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In Global Lethbridge’s Lethbridge-West debate that aired Thursday, Flatla was asked if there should be more funding for mental health services in the city and gave the following response:

“Mental health is absolutely very important to the United Conservatives. Mental health is, sadly, very stigmatized when people are struggling and the United Conservative Government is committing to invest in mental health, both for children and as well for those who are trapped by the cycle of addiction.”

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In response to the 2011 tweet, Flatla provided the following statement to Global News on Friday:

“I don’t recall the context of these eight-year old tweets, but like one in five Canadians, I have dealt with mental health issues of my own in the past. This is personal to me, but I can tell you that I believe anyone who is struggling with mental health absolutely should go and seek the help they need. Sometimes that’s counseling; sometimes that’s prescription medication. Everyone is different, and people should rely on the best advice of health care professionals.

Like I said in the Global debate, mental health is stigmatized, and it ought not to be. It’s disappointing to see my opponents in this election trying to make issue of something that 1 in 5 Albertans will deal with in their lifetime.”

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Provincial election polls close on April 16 at 8:00 p.m.

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