Lawmakers introduce bill to improve mental health resources for LGBTQ youth

A bill introduced this week by House Democrats aims to boost mental health support for LGBTQ youth across the country.

of Mental Health Pride ActThe bill would allow Democrats Eric Sorensen (Illinois), Sharais Davids (Kansas), and Richie Torres (New York), three of the 12 professing LGBTQ members of the current Congress. People) filed Tuesday with mental health resources, school bullying prevention guidelines, and a news release issued Thursday said training for caregivers is being tailored to the needs of LGBTQ youth.

The bill, which includes 47 Democratic co-sponsors, will also mandate a report on the state of mental health care and resources available to LGBTQ youth in foster care and other federal social services programs. It will be. A majority of LGBTQ youth in the United States are placed in foster care or precarious housing (2019) Williams Lab Analysis found.

The action will also require the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) to review and update its list of online mental health resources for LGBTQ youth, the release said. The formal text of the bill has not yet been published.

In a statement, Sorensen stressed that the bill is an important step to ensure LGBTQ people “receive the mental health care and resources they need to save lives.”

“There is a mental health crisis among LGBTQI+ youth across the country and we need to better support this vulnerable community,” said an Illinois legislator.

report A report released last month by The Trevor Project, an LGBTQ youth suicide prevention organization, found that 41 percent of LGBTQ children, teens and young adults in the United States had seriously considered suicide in the past year, More than half of the respondents were transgender and non-binary.

More than 56% of LGBTQ youth who sought mental health care last year were denied access, according to the report. And, according to The Trevor Project, a third of his LGBTQ youth believe their mental health has been negatively impacted by the recent wave of bills across the country aimed at the LGBTQ community. also became clear.

Other findings paint a similarly bleak picture.More than half of her LGBTQ respondents in youth at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) February survey A whopping 22% said their mental health had deteriorated in the past year, and they had attempted suicide.

“This is both heartbreaking and a call to action,” Torres said Thursday, referring to the findings of the Trevor Project report.

Torres, who has been open about her struggles with depression, said the bill would “give people at risk who should be given a safe and positive environment and resources to learn, grow, and thrive as their authentic selves.” It will improve access to services for LGBTQI+ young people who are living in poverty,” he added.

Davids said on Thursday that the reported prevalence of mental health distress among LGBTQ youth in the United States is due to the fact that “we are failing the expectations of many of the most vulnerable children on this issue.” There is,” he claimed as proof.

“My Pride in Mental Health Law takes a holistic and data-driven approach to addressing the mental health crisis for young people in the LGBTQI+ community,” David said. “Simply put, we are saving lives by increasing access to mental health support for children and teens.”

The bill is supported by a wide range of LGBTQ rights and medical groups, including the Human Rights Campaign, the National Center for Transgender Equality, and the American Academy of Pediatrics.

The parliamentary equality group, co-chaired by Sorensen, Davids and Torres, also supports the bill.

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