Brian Kemp : Apologize for Mental Health Bullying By Your Campaign
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On July 9, 2018, the Brian Kemp for Governor campaign in Georgia, through its spokesperson, made a comment questioning the mental stability of Sen. Renee Unterman, saying that she “needs to take her meds before she hurts someone.” I have yet to see an apology from Mr. Kemp or a retraction by the campaign of this statement.
I am calling on Mr. Kemp to apologize publicly and get out of the race for governor. We don't need a governor who tolerates bullying a family that lost a child to suicide after struggling with mental illness, and a mother who is transparent about seeking treatment for depression.
To Brian Kemp:
I am the mother of a daughter who struggled for years with serious, debilitating mental illness. Thankfully, she has been able to get a diagnosis and medications that enable her to master the condition, and she is now a scholarship college student studying social work in criminal justice, planning to work with troubled youth. She doesn't hesitate to share her story or allow me to share it. She is proud of how far she has come.
I call on you to apologize publicy to Senator Renee Unterman for your campaign's statement about her mental health. I demand that you leave the Georgia governor's race. This was a rocket launch of sexism against a respected female leader, but it's much more than that. This statement was made on the birthday of Sen. Unterman's son, Zak, who died tragically at age 25 by suicide following a struggle with mental illness.
I am also an educator who works with students who have been in the mental health system. The Georgia Department of Education is funding a $1.05 million dollar initiative to provide assistance to schools to better manage conditions for students struggling with mental health problems. We need for our governor to continue Gov. Deal's support of removing the stigma of mental illness. You are not the person for that job.