Wednesday, May 25, 2022

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The nation is jolted by another mass shooting, this time at a Texas elementary school; a mixture of hope and stark realities on the 2nd anniversary of Floyd Murder; a new map shows more Americans live within oil & gas "Threat Radius."

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At least 19 children and two adults killed at Texas elementary school, President Biden delivers remarks on shooting from White House, lawmakers plead on gun control, NRA to hold conference in Houston this week, Stacey Abrams and Gov. Brian Kemp favored to win Georgia primary.

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From off-Broadway to West Virginia: the stories of the deadly Upper Big Branch mine explosion, baby formula is on its way back to grocery shelves, and federal funds will combat consolidation in meatpacking.

During Mental Health Awareness Month, CA Policymakers Mull Priorities

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Thursday, May 12, 2022   

May is Mental Health Awareness Month and advocates are hoping Gov. Gavin Newsom will prioritize the issue in his revised budget, due by Sunday.

The governor's January budget proposed $4.7 million to fund the California Parent and Youth Helpline annually for three years. The helpline connects people with a trained counselor for free from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week.

Dr. Lisa Pion-Berlin, president and CEO of Parents Anonymous, which runs the California Parent and Youth Helpline, said additional funding is needed to keep up with demand for their services.

"With greater resources, we could have more trained clinicians to answer the phone," Pion-Berlin explained. "The demand outstrips our capacity right now. We have people on waiting lists to get into our free online weekly support groups."

The service has helped more than 40,000 people in California since it started two years ago, but they would like to help more of the Golden State's 9.3 million children.

Last week was Children's Mental Health Acceptance Week, when people are encouraged to take action and reach out to another person who might be struggling. Pion-Berlin emphasized no one should be blamed or shamed when they ask for help.

"Parents need support in identifying and accepting that change in behavior, mood swings, sleeping patterns, change in friends, that their child looks sad, and that they may need to seek help," Pion-Berlin outlined.

A 2021 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found child suicide rates have been rising in recent years, and suicide is the 8th leading cause of death among children aged 5 to 11.


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