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June 11-18, 2008

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Letters to the Editor

The Super's Swell

I'M IN COMPLETE agreement with Annica Rose ("New Day for Live Oak," Cover Story, May 21) that Live Oak is a great place to live. I too love the diversity, and now that Coffeetopia is three blocks from my house, I'm in heaven.But I'm very surprised that thinks she has to go to 41st or Morrissey to shop for food. Doesn't she know about Live Oak Super just a few blocks from her home? Fresh, but granted not organic, produce--best avocado prices in town. Fantastic bread from Jocotepic Bakery in Watsonville. Asian and Mexican foods. All the basics food staples. And best of all, it's not a chain store.

Nancy Abbey,
Live Oak

Shift the Matrix

AS A LONGTIME Santa Cruz resident now living in the Deep South, I (a) appreciate you being available online; and (b) totally appreciate this well-done article ("Farmed Fish Confidential," Cover Story, June 4). My blog ( about food/water/air and odds & sods, is an information blog and I'd love to put the link to this story on it if I may.Sharing information and wisdom from those who do the research is how we'll all finally move the planet into sustainability and shift the matrix. Thanks again to the writer!

Nancy Seymour,
Luthersville, Ga.

Serious About Seafood

WE'RE WRITING in response to your recent article "Farmed Fish Confidential." Thank you for helping the public to better understand the environmental impacts of certain types of fish farming, ways to make more informed choices, and for highlighting the important work of the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch Program. While this program is very effective in raising consumer awareness, unfortunately, most seafood staff and waiters don't possess the level of training necessary to sufficiently answer customer questions. For this reason, we created FishWise, a unique nonprofit organization that brings the color coding information of the Seafood Watch program directly to the point of purchase at the seafood counter. FishWise empowers retailers to better serve their customers by training seafood staff with science-based information, providing resource materials, and assisting with sourcing more sustainable options. FishWise makes it easy for customers to choose seafood that is healthy for themselves and the oceans. Here in the Santa Cruz area, New Leaf Community Markets partnered with FishWise in 2003 to begin this innovative approach to ocean conservation. This local retailer has proven to be a true leader in the sustainable seafood movement by committing to the most ocean-friendly products and by not selling any red-labeled seafood. FishWise has now expanded throughout Northern California and the East Coast of the U.S., and is preparing to work with the nation's large conventional grocers. The seafood industry, and informed consumers, can be powerful forces for improving the environmental sustainability of seafood and ocean ecosystems. We appreciate Metro Santa Cruz's coverage of this issue and hope that you will continue to give voice to these important issues.

Tobias Aguirre,
Executive Director, FishWise

Fight Back

THE BUDGET for the next fiscal year proposes to slash Santa Cruz County Mental Health Services by more than $7 million dollars. What does this mean? To name just a few things: The elimination of therapy, case management, assessment, rehabilitation and medication services to approximately 660 children and youth; the elimination of five residential programs for adults and elderly including the only residential program located in South County; the elimination of 61 full-time positions from Santa Cruz County Mental Health and the contract agencies that provide mental health services.

But how will this affect you? Children, youth, adults and the elderly will not be able to access the services they need, causing an increase in untreated mental illness and homelessness in our community. According to the National Alliance of the Mentally Ill, "the economic cost of untreated mental illness is more than $100 billion each year in the United States."So what can you do? Come to budget hearings on June 17 at 7pm on the 5th floor of the government building on Ocean Street or call your county supervisors at 454-2200 and ask them not to cut mental health services..

You wouldn't allow cancer patients or heart disease patients to lose their health care. Please don't leave our most vulnerable community members abandoned.

Juliene Schrick,
Santa Cruz

In last week's cover story about Bonny Doon wine impresario Randall Grahm, we got Nicole Walsh's title wrong. She is Bonny Doon's vineyard manager/associate winemaker. We regret the error.

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