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Public Health Efforts (Education; Sanitation; Etc.)

escargot

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I've often wondered how rural areas in America manage their fresh water supply, rubbish disposal and sewage output.

Here in the UK we had the Public Health Act of 1875 which obliged local authorities to organise these matters to put an end to problems such as repeated outbreaks of cholera. No homes could be built without provision.

However, in remoter areas or when when a property was not yet connected to the main sewage system there were legal compromises such as the continuation of the use of 'earth closets' which had to be emptied regularly by local authority employees.*

Low-maintenance septic tanks are now in use where properties are not connected to the main sewage system. Used water is filtered and allowed to soak away safely.

New housing is built with full provision, entailing major traffic disruption while drains are laid. When people grumble about holdups I think 'So you'd prefer parasites and cholera then?'

My assumption was that all this must apply in America too. Seems I was wrong.


*This process was still in action at least up to the early 1980s. The former Mr Snail worked for the local council waste disposal department in his university vacations and spent a happy summer touring the villages on the bucket.
:chuckle:


In the 1960s I lived in a house with full fresh water and sewage provision, though we had only the kitchen tap and one outside flushing toilet.
Friends in nearby streets still had earth closets emptied by the Night Soil crews.
Residents were rehoused and the area was flattened in the late '60s which may have been partly because of the antique sewage system.
 

Endlessly Amazed

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I've often wondered how rural areas in America manage their fresh water supply, rubbish disposal and sewage output.

Here in the UK we had the Public Health Act of 1875 which obliged local authorities to organise these matters to put an end to problems such as repeated outbreaks of cholera. No homes could be built without provision.

However, in remoter areas or when when a property was not yet connected to the main sewage system there were legal compromises such as the continuation of the use of 'earth closets' which had to be emptied regularly by local authority employees.*

Low-maintenance septic tanks are now in use where properties are not connected to the main sewage system. Used water is filtered and allowed to soak away safely.

New housing is built with full provision, entailing major traffic disruption while drains are laid. When people grumble about holdups I think 'So you'd prefer parasites and cholera then?'

My assumption was that all this must apply in America too. Seems I was wrong.


*This process was still in action at least up to the early 1980s. The former Mr Snail worked for the local council waste disposal department in his university vacations and spent a happy summer touring the villages on the bucket.
:chuckle:


In the 1960s I lived in a house with full fresh water and sewage provision, though we had only the kitchen tap and one outside flushing toilet.
Friends in nearby streets still had earth closets emptied by the Night Soil crews.
Residents were rehoused and the area was flattened in the late '60s which may have been partly because of the antique sewage system.
Inadequate sanitation, inadequate heath care, and poor people in the US: a real problem. One on which I have very unpopular opinions regarding root causes; so I will not burden my fellow Forteans with them.

I have personally known parents of families who have chosen to live without sanitation, out in rural areas. They have thought that this was natural, organic, their right to live the way they want, etc. Sometimes it was because they could not afford to have a proper septic tank, cesspool, and leech field installed. However, in most cases I have witnessed, they could have afforded it but decided instead to buy a new truck or take a vacation or quit work for a while and “live off the land.” Of course they loved their children, as evidenced by the new toys purchased for the children. Sanitation was just something they had never considered to be part of providing for their children. Health care and dental visits were similarly prioritized. Magical thinking is truly awesome and scares me, as does stupidity and selfishness.

I have socially-conscious, compassionate friends who want the Federal government to make things better for the poor – but they don’t want their taxes to go up to pay for it. Someone else, someone who has more money than they do, should pay for it. Some of these people are in the top 10% of wealth and income in the US – so very rich indeed. Magical thinking is truly awesome and scares me, as does stupidity and selfishness.

Flushed and Forgotten: Sanitation and Wastewater in Rural Communities in the US | Institute for the Study of Human Rights (humanrightscolumbia.org)

In the US, health care for the poor is the responsibility of various public entities, which are funded by taxes at the township (in some states), city, county, state, and Federal levels. It is inadequate and millions of poor people fall through the cracks.

For the Rancho Vista, Texas, residents: I suspect that if someone organized them and their medical records, and presented this to the health officials (I think at the county level for Texas), they would get medical treatment for worms. Note: this would not fix the sewage nor the stray dog problem. However, I think it is unlikely that anyone from that community would want to or could organize the community sufficiently. For the residents who 1. are legal residents of the US, and 2. who have paid into social security and medicare through legal jobs for at least 10 years, and 3. who are of retirement age: they could go to any doctor who accepts medicare and get treatment. In the US, most but not all physicians accept medicare.

I live in an unincorporated county area, meaning no legal, municipal entity, but one which was carefully planned for sanitation and water. The water lines and sewer system were installed by the community developer, who followed state standards. We pay a private, for-profit company for water and sewage. This for-profit company is regulated at the state level by the Arizona Corporation Commission (BTW, a very cozy relationship exists between the appointed ACC governing board and the for-profit companies providing public utilities). My trash service is also through a private company, not regulated by the ACC, but which follows state and county regulations.

So, fellow Forteans, how much would you be willing to have your taxes raised to ameliorate such situations for strangers?
 

escargot

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So, fellow Forteans, how much would you be willing to have your taxes raised to ameliorate such situations for strangers?
The longsighted approach, as with all public works, is that the health of the nation comes first. We have to provide the means to protect the poorest from bad health, especially infections, because otherwise we will all suffer.

It was believed for many years that Prince Albert, Queen Victoria's consort, died from typhoid contracted from inadequate Palace drainage, proving that even the highest in the land were not immune.

The modern view is that Albert most likely had lifelong IBS/Crohn's Disease and may have died of a combination of pneumonia and septicaemia following a perforated intra-abdominal abscess.

Medical science had no explanation or treatment for chronic inflammatory intestinal conditions at the time.

However, the typhoid diagnosis in 1861 must have provided some impetus toward the 1875 Public Health Act. If so Prince Albert saved countless lives by dying so young.

So yup, take my tax money and build sewers and water treatment plants, and while you're at it organise waste collections and build clinics.
It's my life you're saving. :wink2:
 
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ramonmercado

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Some delayed justice.

Canada has agreed to pay C$2.8bn ($2.9bn; £1.68bn) to settle a class-action lawsuit seeking compensation for the loss of language and culture caused by its residential school system.

Government-funded compulsory boarding schools were part of a policy meant to assimilate children and destroy indigenous cultures and languages. The money will be paid to a non-profit trust independent of the government. But the settlement must still be finalised and approved by a court.

The lawsuit was brought by 325 First Nations in 2012, and sought reparations for the abuse indigenous Canadians faced at the government boarding schools.

Some 150,000 First Nations, Métis and Inuit children were taken from their families and placed in these schools from the 19th Century into the 1970s. Many then suffered physical, emotional and sexual abuse.

Survivors testified about children who died at the schools, where students were often housed in poorly built, poorly heated, and unsanitary facilities.

In recent years, Indigenous communities have found evidence of hundreds of mass unmarked graves on the grounds of former residential schools. These discoveries have reignited debate about the system.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-64362246
 

escargot

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My brother is in nursing school. He's writing a paper on Legionnaire's Disease, which he told me has been known to be found in grocery store mist sprayers. This is a website that shows recent outbreaks: Recent Legionnaires’ Disease Outbreaks.
Legionnaires’ disease is terrible. Even if it doesn't kill you, there's a long recovery time.

When I worked on the wards I came across several patients with it. One was a coach driver who'd contracted it at work.
He was prostrate and being tube-fed when I met him. Over a few weeks he improved to the stage of sitting up though he was still so weak he couldn't feed himself.

Eventually I was sent to tell him that he could have some solid food at last! Toast!
I had to cut it into tiny cubes and soak it in soup, and feed it to him in tiny amounts at a time, but he sportingly declared it was the best lunch he'd ever had. :cool:

Luckily he was only 40 and normally in excellent health so had a good start on it, and eventually went home and back to work.
 

Kondoru

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Who will pay for this, Ramonmercado?

The same people who think Compulsory Education is a Good Idea??
 

Endlessly Amazed

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Who will pay for this, Ramonmercado?

The same people who think Compulsory Education is a Good Idea??
Well, I am not Ramonmercado, but will take a stab at it:

The article states that it is the nation of Canada who will pay for it. So, whomever Canada gets its revenue from, will be the ultimate payers. The taxpayers and others who pay to Canada for leasing, training, purchases, etc., during the time of the payments. Also, perhaps bond issues, which the US uses a lot but I don't know about Canada.

"The same people who think Compulsory Education is a Good Idea??"
If you are referring to the original non-native government employees who instituted and enacted the compulsory education for natives, then the answer is no, because these people are all long dead (and wouldn't be liable anyway under the law.)

If you are referring to the current non-native employees of the Canadian government, then they have no liability for this if they are/were doing their jobs per the letter and judicial interpretation of the law.

Who do you think should pay for it?
 

merricat

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I'm often astonished at the amount of people in the UK who would cut off their nose to spite their face rather than contribute to the pot that keeps society functioning well for everyone. I imagine they didn't mind partaking of the privileges that came from said pot after WW2.
 

ramonmercado

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Who will pay for this, Ramonmercado?

The same people who think Compulsory Education is a Good Idea??

Did you read this part?

Some 150,000 First Nations, Métis and Inuit children were taken from their families and placed in these schools from the 19th Century into the 1970s. Many then suffered physical, emotional and sexual abuse.

Survivors testified about children who died at the schools, where students were often housed in poorly built, poorly heated, and unsanitary facilities.
 

merricat

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Did you read this part?

Some 150,000 First Nations, Métis and Inuit children were taken from their families and placed in these schools from the 19th Century into the 1970s. Many then suffered physical, emotional and sexual abuse.

Survivors testified about children who died at the schools, where students were often housed in poorly built, poorly heated, and unsanitary facilities.
This reminds me of the series 'Three Pines', has anyone seen it? It's beautiful, painful, excellent stuff!
 

brownmane

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Who will pay for this, Ramonmercado?

The same people who think Compulsory Education is a Good Idea??
Did you read this part?

Some 150,000 First Nations, Métis and Inuit children were taken from their families and placed in these schools from the 19th Century into the 1970s. Many then suffered physical, emotional and sexual abuse.

Survivors testified about children who died at the schools, where students were often housed in poorly built, poorly heated, and unsanitary facilities.
Wow @Kondoru! Not sure what you intended with this seemingly condescending and flippant remark.

I am a Canadian. This happened. Indigenous people and generations of their families were harmed. It was a government "program" that basically took kids away from their families and communities to teach them that they were inferior to white colonialists.

Kids were lost, either running away and dying or dying of malnutrition and neglect or suffering severe punishment or abuse. The kids were abused, not allowed to speak their languages nor practise anything of their culture and the schools' mandates were, to put it bluntly, but truthfully, take the Indian out of them.

Indigenous communities, to this day, experience racism, have high incidents of alcoholism in families and high incidents of suicides in young people.

I hate that my country is responsible for this. We will be paying.

To further your knowledge of just an iota of this, read Seven Fallen Feathers by Tanya Talega. It is a collection of true stories. These stories are about indigenous kids who have died from 2000-2011 in Thunder Bay Ontario.

I have the book and still have not been able to finish reading it. It is very heart rending.

Here's a link about the author and the book if you want a very brief description: https://www.cbc.ca/books/seven-fallen-feathers-1.4232642
 

escargot

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Well, I'm going to quote myself now.

Water provision and sewage removal have always been problematic. You need your clean water and your sewage to be kept well apart.
These days we don't realise what a tall order all this is when we're grumbling about the water bill.

My home town was built round one heavy industry from the 1830s onwards. Fresh water provision was good from the start, apparently via a series of underground tanks scattered around the area. Now and then builders will find one and work will be held up until it is dealt with.

By contrast, the next town was founded by the Romans and until relatively modern times had poor water provision. Disposal of waste was even less hygienic. That's how you get epidemics like typhoid.
There were two outbreaks there around the time my town was being built, less than 10 miles away, and to their credit the founding fathers were determined to keep it out of their shiny new Company houses and factories.

Anyway... my point was that without public works such as the Roman aqueducts, everything comes and leaves via the water table. It's not necessarily safer to live above the level of (say) a graveyard or public cesspit.

This is still a problem in rural parts of the USA, where sewage disposal is so inefficient that intestinal worms are endemic in some areas. It's horrific.
Fascinating though.
 

Kondoru

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Poor education is a problem for lots of folk. I have met many folk who had problems with schooling. (Many from Public schools)

If I had children, they would never be let near a school. I have been in favour of home schooling ever since I heard of the concept `you dont need to go to school`.

And thats a whole other can of worms

its tragic, that these kids, who could have been brought up to be model citizens have been let down by the system. Lost generation indeed.

But!

To record a culture, to preserve a culture, you need education. (Even oral history, I dont know how widespread oral history recording is in Canada; I read about some accounts from the 60s, which is a bit earlier than in this country).

To promote a culture, you need education.

To uphold the law, to stick up for your rights, you need education.

To be a good citizen, you need education.

Does anyone have a sensible answer to this? (Adult education is one of them, speaking as a person who left school without qualifications and now id working on a Masters).
 

Endlessly Amazed

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Poor education is a problem for lots of folk. I have met many folk who had problems with schooling. (Many from Public schools)

If I had children, they would never be let near a school. I have been in favour of home schooling ever since I heard of the concept `you dont need to go to school`.

And thats a whole other can of worms

its tragic, that these kids, who could have been brought up to be model citizens have been let down by the system. Lost generation indeed.

But!

To record a culture, to preserve a culture, you need education. (Even oral history, I dont know how widespread oral history recording is in Canada; I read about some accounts from the 60s, which is a bit earlier than in this country).

To promote a culture, you need education.

To uphold the law, to stick up for your rights, you need education.

To be a good citizen, you need education.

Does anyone have a sensible answer to this? (Adult education is one of them, speaking as a person who left school without qualifications and now id working on a Masters).

So, Kondoru: again, who do you think should pay the $2.9B settlement?

Your response most recently seems to have gone off on a tangent justifying "education" and ignoring the whole "forcibly taken from their parents and abused/neglected/starved/beaten/raped/killed/allowed to die from preventable infectious diseases."

Who should pay the settlement?
 

Kondoru

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It looks like its going to be the taxpayer.

But of course, if spent well, society, and the taxpayer will benefit.

I dont know too much about Canada, but there seems to be a lot of folks who live in really remote areas. (most, -not all, are natives). Better facilities (getting back to the thread theme) would be good.

sending young folks long way for education isnt good for them. (Though some may like it).

These are communities who would benefit from better communications, make better education opportunities, jobs, healthcare, cultural activities, rights...

How is Canada for Broadband provision and internet literacy?

I found a copy of Grenfells `Labrador Doctor`.

Imagine being a GP and having to say `We can save this guy but it would mean access to decent medical provision, which we dont have, thats before we talk about cost.`

Grenfel doesnt talk about race, not much.

Mostly he just talks about people. He tries to help all.

This is how it should be.

I have read a bit about modern Labrador and it seem pretty remote still and impoverished.
 

brownmane

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How is Canada for Broadband provision and internet literacy?
Not great. Our cell phone plans, and, most likely, internet costs are some of the highest in the world.

Even rural areas in heavily populated southwestern Ontario, where I live, do not all have internet access. When schools were closed during the pandemic and online learning was set up, there were many areas that had no access, or had to pay over $100.00 monthly for internet access to schooling.
 

Endlessly Amazed

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With great restraint, I am going to gently point out that some of the UK members in this thread are criticizing other countries (Canada and the US): the decisions the governments make, living conditions, costs, etc. This is an international forum, not a UK forum. Please be mindful of those of us who do not live in the UK nor share their worldview. It is very different to read criticism of one's country from a fellow citizen compared to an outsider. And I haven't once mentioned insularity.

I am now going to medically treat my unnatural restraint with cognac.
 

ramonmercado

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I think this fits in here. I hope the victims are properly compensated.

Children in care were punched, locked out naked and had vinegar poured on cuts, according to reports that were filed over three years before the homes were finally shut.

A BBC investigation has learned more than 100 concerns were logged at the Doncaster children's homes, which retained a "good" Ofsted rating. Leaked documents also show Ofsted was alerted 40 times about incidents.

The regulator has now apologised, as has Hesley Group, which ran the homes.

More than 100 of the UK's most vulnerable children in care are feared to have been harmed, involving many who are non-verbal.

The homes, which included two residential special schools, charged local authorities £250,000 a year to care for each young person.

The homes continued to be rated as "good" by Ofsted, but in March 2021 the regulator finally stepped in and they were closed shortly afterwards.

BBC News revealed in June 2022 that more than 100 safeguarding reports had been made to authorities and, in October, an expert panel said there had been "systemic and sustained abuse" in the homes.

But now - through leaked Hesley Group documents, including confidential safeguarding reports, and interviews with 15 former staff - the BBC can reveal the scale of the failure of authorities to act. Our investigation found:

  • Children were reportedly locked overnight in bathrooms, left in soiled clothes, made to sit in cold baths and deprived of medication for days
  • The mother of a girl - who is autistic and has severe learning difficulties and epilepsy - told us her daughter had been dragged across the floor of a home
  • Criminal record checks were not signed off for some staff for up to six months after they started working with vulnerable children
  • South Yorkshire Police - currently investigating some Hesley staff for alleged abuse - was warned by support workers three years before the closures
  • Hesley's accounts recorded a 16% profit of £12m for all the sites it runs - almost the same margin (17%) regarded as "excessive" by a government watchdog ...
https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-63792458
 

Kondoru

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I knew a couple who were blocked repeatedly from seeing their disabled daughter, who was in a home.

I dont know what was going on, but the authorities were very keen for them not to have access.

Which is very worrying.

But!

Part of the problem, I suspect, was they wanted to visit regularly, whereas other parents never visited their kids, or at most, on their birthdays.

Their daughter was always well supplied with the best clothing and consumer durables.

Unlike the other kids.
 

eziofan

Devoted Cultist
Joined
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Messages
175
The longsighted approach, as with all public works, is that the health of the nation comes first. We have to provide the means to protect the poorest from bad health, especially infections, because otherwise we will all suffer.

It was believed for many years that Prince Albert, Queen Victoria's consort, died from typhoid contracted from inadequate Palace drainage, proving that even the highest in the land were not immune.

The modern view is that Albert most likely had lifelong IBS/Crohn's Disease and may have died of a combination of pneumonia and septicaemia following a perforated intra-abdominal abscess.

Medical science had no explanation or treatment for chronic inflammatory intestinal conditions at the time.

However, the typhoid diagnosis in 1861 must have provided some impetus toward the 1875 Public Health Act. If so Prince Albert saved countless lives by dying so young.

So yup, take my tax money and build sewers and water treatment plants, and while you're at it organise waste collections and build clinics.
It's my life you're saving. :wink2:
Dont forget The Great Stench of August 1858 which led to the construction of the London Outfall Sewers, a wonder of Victorian engineering. The Abbey Mills pumping station was near to where I grew up as a kid. Slight aside, but when we were kids we were often chased off the 'sewer bank'. Now its opened up as a 'Greenway'!
 
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maximus otter

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Messages
11,534
And that is why the private communications companies don't spend money to provide access to all areas. Profit and money first.

Well, yeah, otherwise there wouldn’t be a company.

“It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own self-interest. We address ourselves not to their humanity but to their self-love, and never talk to them of our own necessities, but of their advantages”


Adam Smith, An Inquiry into the Nature & Causes of the Wealth of Nations, Vol 1

maximus otter
 

brownmane

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Well, yeah, otherwise there wouldn’t be a company.

“It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own self-interest. We address ourselves not to their humanity but to their self-love, and never talk to them of our own necessities, but of their advantages”


Adam Smith, An Inquiry into the Nature & Causes of the Wealth of Nations, Vol 1

maximus otter
That's not quite what I was getting at. When there are utilities to be connected across a country, that is where the gov't should be responsible.

We have three huge telecomms in Ontario. The one had an outage for days (cable, internet and cell). Businesses (banks, government, and others) and individuals had no connections. Our gov't is leaving it up to the three to maintain the security of the whole province. They are NOW expected to share their grids when another goes down. Like this couldn't have been foreseen.

This is also part of why we have close to the highest rates in the world. Canada is rarely at the top of anything :)
 

maximus otter

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That's not quite what I was getting at. When there are utilities to be connected across a country, that is where the gov't should be responsible.

We have three huge telecomms in Ontario. The one had an outage for days (cable, internet and cell). Businesses (banks, government, and others) and individuals had no connections. Our gov't is leaving it up to the three to maintain the security of the whole province. They are NOW expected to share their grids when another goes down. Like this couldn't have been foreseen.

This is also part of why we have close to the highest rates in the world. Canada is rarely at the top of anything :)

l see your point, but “Let’s put government in charge, that’ll make it more efficient!” is a sentence l don’t predict myself using frequently.

maximus otter
 
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