Unemployed need more support systems

LETTERS: I'VE BEEN active in humanitarian work and volunteerism since my university days until the pandemic struck. I've served the public sector and worked with diverse communities.

It is with a sense of responsibility that I share my modest experiences, and, ideally, reach the prime minister, for societal change.

People facing unemployment resort to unhealthy coping mechanisms, such as excessive alcohol consumption, smoking, and, in extreme cases, substance abuse like meth.

This revelation comes from a homeless person in Kuala Lumpur four years ago, during my efforts to organise food for the homeless.

This person was a senior executive in an organisation before the pandemic hit, leading to his termination without compensation due to insufficient funds in the company.

In the aftermath, he succumbed to meth addiction after mingling with the wrong crowd, including upper-management white-collar individuals.

These behaviours not only worsened his health problems but also contributed to the emergence of new ones.

His family discovered his struggles, and the ripple effects of unemployment affected their mental and physical wellbeing.

He shared heartbreaking stories of others in his circle who had gone astray or lost their lives due to meth abuse.

While unemployment leads to financial instability, causing stress and anxiety that, in turn, contribute to depression and insomnia, the interrelation with unhealthy coping mechanisms cannot be overlooked.

Sadly, many people affected by meth addiction remain stuck in a dangerous situation, with only a few reaching out to non-governmental organisations and support systems for assistance.

Some have overcome addiction and rebuilt their lives, while others are in the process with support from these systems.

This article emphasises the need for increased government and community support, advocating for mental health services, affordable healthcare and job placement


It is crucial to discuss the importance of a support system to help people navigate unemployment, as the level of awareness on this matter remains insufficient.



The views expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect those of the New Straits Times

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