Stewart Aims to Improve Access to Existing Suicide Prevention Resources
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Chris Stewart (R-UT) joins Congressman J. Luis Correa (D-CA) in introducing the Improving Mental Health Access for Students Act, H.R. 3192. This bipartisan legislation aims to raise college students’ awareness of existing suicide prevention resources.
This bill simply requires colleges and universities to provide the contact information for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline; Crisis Text Line; and a campus mental health center, if applicable, on student identification cards. For colleges and universities that do not provide identification cards to their students, schools must ensure that the information is available on their website.
“A loss of life at any age is tragic, but it is especially heartbreaking losing students at such an exciting and pivotal time in their lives. This bill will make existing critical resources more visible for those in crisis and improve mental health across college campuses.” - Rep. Chris Stewart
More about the “Improving Mental Health Access for Students Act”:
In 2017, there were more than 47,000 suicides nationwide, making it the tenth-leading cause of death. Among teenagers and young adults, the suicide rate is particularly alarming, with suicide reported as the second-leading cause of death for people between the ages of 15 and 24. In Utah, suicide is the number one cause of deaths among 10 to 17-year-olds.
Suicide is a major public health problem. Providing information on existing suicide prevention resources can help students experiencing suicidal thoughts or emotional distress and potentially save lives.
Senator John Kennedy (R-LA) and Senator Doug Jones (D-AL) introduced a companion bill in the Senate. This legislation is supported by the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, the Crisis Text Line, and Active Minds.