Cuccinelli on staff appointments: “We pick the best folks”
Attorney General- Elect Ken Cuccinelli was my live guest today on NBC12 First at 4. The Republican is just a few days away from being sworn in as the Commonwealth’s next top attorney, and has already faced some heat because of the people he has appointed to his senior staff. A political opponent of the AG-Elect pointed out to the Washington Post that the majority of his appointments have been men.
Cuccinelli responded to the attack and talked about his donation of $100,000 to the Daily Planet in Richmond during our interview. You can see it, in its entirety by clicking here.
The full release on his donation to the Daily Planet can be found after the jump.
Attorney General-Elect Donates Inaugural Funds to Mental Health Awareness
$100,000 Given to The Daily Planet, Helping Medical Needs of Homeless and Uninsured
RICHMOND, VA – Attorney General-Elect Ken Cuccinelli today announced that a $100,000 surplus from his inaugural funds will be donated to The Daily Planet Inc., a downtown nonprofit health care center that offers health care services to the region’s homeless and low-income, uninsured individuals.
“Inaugural events are certainly a celebration of the peaceful transfer of power in a democracy, but they can also stand as a time to bring to light the needs of some of society’s most vulnerable, underserved citizens,” said Attorney General-Elect Cuccinelli, who will hold events during inaugural week to raise awareness of mental health issues. “Mental health is a topic that bridges political parties. I have worked to improve Virginia’s mental health system and I have made a promise to continue my work after I am sworn in as the Commonwealth’s 46th Attorney General.”
Daily Planet Board of Directors President George Welch Jr. applauded Cuccinelli’s efforts, noting the funds will be put toward continuing operations at the health care center at 517 W. Grace St. in Richmond.
“We are grateful to Ken for bringing such attention and resources to the efforts at our organization, particularly during these difficult economic times when causes like mental health are often overlooked,” Welch said of The Daily Planet, which offers primary medical, behavioral health, dental, and eye care clinics and celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2009. Last year, 6,000 men, women and children accessed services at the Planet for almost 24,000 patient visits.
Added Welch: “This important funding will provide us with a big boost at a critical time.”
The event was attended by officials from Dominion Resources Inc., Capital One Financial Corp., Anthem, Universal Corp. and Psychiatric Solutions, representing the businesses across Virginia that have supported the Attorney General-Elect’s mental health awareness campaign. After the event, Cuccinelli held a roundtable in the Daily Planet’s board room to discuss ways to improve mental health care in Virginia. The Attorney General-Elect also plans to offer a comprehensive legislative package on mental health issues, to be presented to the 2010 Virginia General Assembly Session. Some of those initiatives include giving law students the ability to represent the mentally ill in court and allowing doctors to move committed patients under court order from inpatient treatment to outpatient treatment without going back to court.
About the Daily Planet: A nonprofit, 501(c)3 charitable organization founded in 1969, The Daily Planet offers health care services to the Greater Richmond area’s homeless and medically-underserved population. The organization is committed to providing the highest quality service in the most cost-effective manner to the people it serves, continually adapting to best meet the ever-changing needs of its patients, providing vision, dental, primary medical, behavioral health and psychiatric care, case management, laundry and shower facilities, clothing closets, escrow banking and mail services.