All im­mi­grants should get care

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - EDITORIAL -

I’ve had a few dif­fer­ent re­sponses to my let­ter of Mon­day, Dec. 28th, re: not be­ing able to af­ford den­tal care, while our gov­ern­ments of­fer free den­tal care to refugees. At least one fam­ily mem­ber says, kindly, “You (could) come off sound­ing like Don­ald Trump.” A jour­nal­ist friend con­grat­u­lated me on my let­ter, as did one se­nior friend. As well, one den­tist has called to of­fer some as­sis­tance of some sort and I have been given an ap­point­ment. So why am I prompted to write again?

At no time have I in­di­cated in my let­ter or any other cor­re­spon­dence that I dis­agreed with our gov­ern­ments help­ing refugees with their den­tal care and all care as we may see it upon their ar­rival in our coun­try, our Is­land. They are far worse off than I am, and I have been closely fol­low­ing all th­ese news sto­ries as they break. I de­lib­er­ately vol­un­teered with the P.E.I. As­so­ci­a­tion of New­com­ers, to be able to as­sist with teach­ing English to our refugees when needed. Cur­rently I’m work­ing with a new­comer from Viet Nam and en­joy­ing that chal­lenge.

All new­com­ers are here for a va­ri­ety of rea­sons. Not all are from war-torn coun­tries, not all have had their homes bombed and lost fam­ily mem­bers, neigh­bours, and close friends. But all de­serve to be able to enjoy our lan­guage and in the case of refugees, yes, give them as much of our riches as we pos­si­bly can. If that in­cludes free den­tal care, of course, of­fer it. As for me, I’m hum­bled that a lo­cal den­tist would call and make any kind of an of­fer. That was never on my mind when I wrote my let­ter of Dec. 28. I had some­thing to say and I said it. Just as I’m do­ing now. Kathy Birt, Mount Ste­wart

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