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Rep. Thierry, Shawn

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Representative Thierry Prioritizes Mental Health For 86th Legislature: Pre-files Bi-Partisan Mental Health Package  print page

by: Rep. Thierry, Shawn
11/12/2018

CR 16, HB 198 and HB 204 will focus efforts on providing assistance to Texans battling mental illness with a specific focus on children in public schools.

Austin, Texas: On Tuesday, November 12, 2018, Representative Shawn Thierry (Houston) is taking the lead on mental health issues affecting Texan children and adults by pre-filing three new pieces of legislation, and is working on additional policies to assist her constituency and all Texans.

“As a Texas legislator, and mother of a school aged child, I am concerned that the issue of mental health is not being tackled as comprehensively as it should and that our children are being left behind. In Texas, more than 20 percent of children between the ages of 9 and 17 have a diagnosed mental illness, many are undiagnosed, and suicide rates in children are rising at an alarming rate. Further, more than 500,000 Texans suffer from serious and persistent mental illness and 1 in 5 Texans experience a mental health condition each year.” Rep. Thierry stated.

House Bill 198 would provide mental health services and mental health education to public school students through the establishment and creation of school-based health centers which would include mental health services and mental health education. HB 198 also allows for school districts to establish local health care advisory councils that require the inclusion of one licensed mental health services providers on each council. HB 204 will help public school students by including mental health in the enrichment curriculum. HCR 16 was also drafted by Thierry to help remove the silent stigma of mental illness by declaring the month of May as an annual observance of Mental Health Month in Texas. "We must lift the veil off of this health condition through greater public understanding of mental health issues and promote treatment, care, and support for those living with mental illness in Texas, " implored Rep. Thierry.

"Our state is in dire need of additional mental health legislation. We now see that this illness does not discriminate by age, race, religion, or political party. All Texans can be adversely affected and impacted. I will continue to work with all members in the Texas legislature on a bi-partisan basis to ensure that our children and adult residents have the assistance, tools, and resources needed to address and treat this health care epidemic.” Representative Thierry concluded.

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