Parnell: Eating Disorders Week virtually ignored

Kelowna editor says more needs to be done for people struggling with eating disorders

Today marks the end of Eating Disorder Awareness Week and those who are fighting this mental health related issue appear to be doing it on their own.

At least that’s what it seems like for what is a major killer.

If you haven’t heard of anything surrounding this week, you aren’t alone and it begs the question, why is no one talking about eating disorders?

Purple is the nationally recognized symbol of Eating Disorders Awareness Week and many city’s have done things to honour this week and put a spotlight on the issue. In past years, the sails in Kelowna have been lit purple, however this year there appears to be nothing done to create awareness on the issue.

“The major issue here is the ultimate silence surrounding EDs,” wrote Kelowna advocate and writer Emily Simone Lukaszek, who has suffered from an eating disorder. “They are not a lifestyle choice. They are not a phase. They are not something to be taken lightly. They are the deadliest, more vicious and pervasive of mental illnesses and I would publicly like to plea for more education and treatment resources.”

Lukaszek went on to say that treatment facilities for those battling eating disorders are woefully inadequate in the province. She said for the past several decades there have only been seven inpatient beds available at the Provincial Tertiary Eating Disorders Program at St Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver, for the entire province, with no more funding being allocated.

The silence during this week, a week that should come along with education and conversation, is something that Lukaszek wishes were different.

“This silence weighs heavy on my heart when there should be a huge promotion of conversation and education around eating disorders,” she said.

With a lack of services in B.C., many like her resort to out of province travel, to places like the world-renowned program in Guelph, Ontario called Homewood Health Centre, to which she was eventually admitted after being turned down four times.

It shouldn’t be this hard to get help. We’re coming off Bell Let’s Talk, a day that raised a lot of money and awareness on social media. But it’s not enough just to re-Tweet or Facebook a post once a year. That’s not good enough. We need to push our governments and our leaders for more help for those battling eating disorders.

To report a typo, email: edit@kelownacapnews.com.



kparnell@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Reel Reviews: A cure for anger

We say, “Purge it up, goofballs.”

Kelowna families honour the dead by releasing butterflies

The Nicholson matriarchs release 33 butterflies

Carr’s Landing Art Tour showcases local talent

14th annual tour in Lake Country July 28-29 and Aug. 4-5

The Okanagan Croatian Club all smiles after World Cup loss

They say winning second place brought Croatia to the world stage

East Shuswap Road wildfire’s fire line being controlled

Firefighters saved an eagle’s nest and eaglets while controlling fire lines

REPLAY: B.C.’s best video this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

Course veterans seize victory in Peach City Classic

The first place titles in this year’s triathlon belonged to returning competitors.

Vernon writers launch online workshop for teens, young adults

Storymakers’ Raise Your Voice workshop seeks to help women writers uncover and use voice

Former NHL goalie Ray Emery drowns in Lake Ontario

Police say the 35-year-old’s death appears to be a ‘case of misadventure’

Air quality statement warns of smoky air for Kamloops area

Environment ministry says area on north side of Thompson River may be affected by wildfire smoke

Pussy Riot claims on-field protest at World Cup final

Russian protest group claimed responsibility after four people ran onto field in police uniforms

Fans party on Montreal streets after French World Cup win

To city is home to nearly 57,000 French nationals

Your reviews: John Fogerty rocks the South Okanagan

Photos and reviews from fans in Penticton at John Fogerty’s concert in the SOEC

B.C. VIEWS: Making private health care illegal again

Adrian Dix battles to maintain Cuba-style medical monopoly

Most Read