Saturday, August 13, 2022


Voting-rights groups sue AZ to block 'Election Security' Bills; U.S House vote expected today on the new Inflation Reduction Act; the Attorney General moves to release details on search of Trump s home.


Local election officials detail how election misinformation is fueling threats; Media outlets ask a court to unseal the search warrant of Donald Trump's home; and the CDC changes its approach to COVID-19.


Infrastructure funding is on its way, ranchers anticipate money from the Inflation Reduction Act, and rural America is becoming more diverse, but you wouldn't know it by looking at the leadership.

Help is Available for WI Farmers Facing Mental-Health Challenges


Wednesday, May 25, 2022   

From inflation to climate change, Wisconsin farmers face numerous sources of stress that can't help but affect their health. And one program is offering mental and emotional support to farm operators who need it.

The Farmer Wellness Program, an initiative of the state's Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, offers in-person and remote counseling for farmers across the state.

Dan Bauer, program supervisor for the Wisconsin Farm Center, which administers the program, said they also have a 24/7 emergency line.

"So, that 24/7 line is available to farmers," he said, "and really, what it's designed to do is to get them through a terribly tough time. It's not for ongoing care, or not for long-term treatment."

In a December poll of farmers and farm workers commissioned by the American Farm Bureau Federation, more than 60% of respondents said they felt more stress in 2021 compared with the previous year. They cited financial issues, fear of losing their farms and an uncertain future among their greatest stressors.

According to a 2020 report from the National Institutes of Health, about 6.5 million rural Americans struggle with mental-health issues, but counseling services tend to cluster in urban and suburban areas.

Dr. Rhonda Randall, UnitedHealthcare executive vice president and chief medical officer, said technology has made inroads in improving rural access to mental-health services.

"Tele-Behavioral Health has really been beneficial in helping equal out that access, because now licensed mental-health professionals can practice and care for people in communities that may have otherwise had a very long drive to get to see them," she said, "so, think about people in rural areas."

The NIH report estimated as many as 65% of non-metropolitan counties lack a psychiatrist. Bauer said DAT-CAP's "Rural Realities" podcast also can offer helpful tips to farmers looking to prioritize their mental health.

Disclosure: United Healthcare contributes to our fund for reporting on Health Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

get more stories like this via email
Since the 2020 election, at least 19 states have passed 34 laws restrict­ing access to voting, according to the Brennan Center For Justice. (Orlowiski Designs/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Voting-rights advocates are suing the state of Arizona over new regulations they say make it harder for some people to register and would block thousa…

Social Issues

New Hampshire ranks second in the country on measures of child well-being, according to the new 2022 Kids Count Data Book from the Annie E. Casey …

Social Issues

Massachusetts ranks first in the nation for children's well-being, according to the 2022 Kids Count Data Book from the Annie E. Casey Foundation…

While there are continued disparities, an annual report says Minnesota has seen progress in elevating kids out of poverty, with 12% of children falling into that category. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Minnesota once again gets a high ranking among states for child well-being, but an annual report says the state's disparities remain a challenge…

Social Issues

Some measurements of children's well-being show warning signs in Iowa in the area of education. The numbers contrast with Iowa's overall ranking in a …

Pictured in the center is Francine "Fran" Pace, one of 11 graduates of this summer's Youth Leadership Academy for Iowans with disabilities. (Photo courtesy of DD Council).

Health and Wellness

Nearly a dozen Iowa youths with disabilities are taking newly developed leadership skills out into the world. A summer academy wrapped up this month…


A coalition of community organizations teamed up in Oregon to force a chronic polluter out of business, and bring environmental justice to a nearby …

Health and Wellness

During National Health Center Week, health-care advocates are highlighting the work Community Health Centers are doing to improve access to care …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright © 2021