The Weekly MashUp is a recurring segment on Hear Me Out, the Young Minds’ Blog, highlighting the most pertinent local and national news for children’s mental health advocates. If you haven’t already, sign up to be on our email list to get the Weekly MashUp delivered to your inbox automatically, every Friday!
State Audit Slams California’s Weak Oversight of Psych Drugs For Foster Kids
The Mercury News – 8.23.16
State Auditor, Elaine Howle, released a report on Tuesday which investigated prescriptions of psychotropic drugs for foster youth. The report finds that between 2014-15, California’s Department of Social Services (CDSS) lacked court or parental authorization to prescribe at least one of the drugs given to over 65% of the 9,317 foster youth who received psych meds. Investigators also found that “nearly 12 percent of California’s more than 79,000 foster children received almost 96,000 Medi-Cal paid prescriptions for psychotropic medications,” which translates to nearly 10 prescriptions per youth per year. Sen. Mike McGuire, D-Healdsburg, says “it’s obvious from this audit that too many have known about this broken system for too long…And it’s appalling.” McGuire is sponsoring SB 1174, one of three bills in a package of legislative reforms seeking to address the overmedication of foster youth, which are making their way to the Governor’s desk.
The Scariest Part About America’s LGBTQ Suicide Epidemic Is What We Don’t Know About It
Vice – 8.23.16
Earlier this month, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released findings from the 2015 Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance Survey (YRBS), which highlights the different challenges LGBTQ youth face to their personal health. The report found that 23% of LGB young people reported experiencing sexual dating violence, and 18% reported experiencing physical dating violence, compared to 9% and 8% of heterosexual youth respectively. Almost 29.4% of LGB students attempted suicide in 2015 and 42.8% reported suicidal ideation. Dr. Ann P. Haas, a senior consultant to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), notes that “it’s a question of being marginalized, really, both in terms of young people’s inner sense of who they are and how they’re treated by others. There’s a psychological and emotional component that we see when looking at suicide among all other groups, and it’s even more prevalent here.”
Latino Service Providers-Sonoma County Has $1 Million Grant To Improve Latino Mental Health
The Press Democrat – 8.21.16
According to a 2015 study by the National Institute of Mental Health on disparities in health services, 16.6% of white adults received mental health services between 2008 and 2012, while only 7.3% of Latinos received services. Sonoma State University is spearheading a $1.18 million grant project geared towards identifying best cultural practices, such as Aztec dancing and mural painting, which lead to improved mental and behavioral health. The grant will fund a 4 year initiative to train 16 local high school students per year to become mental health ambassadors and cultural and artistic leaders. The goals outlined for the project are to reduce mental health stigma in the Latino community, increase knowledge of mental health symptoms and resources, grow the number of Latinos who obtain mental health services, and promote youth leadership and cultural pride.
Children Now – August 2016
Legislature Backs Bills to Support State’s Foster Youth
The California Report – 8.26.16
Keep The Ball Rolling for Children’s Mental Health
Idaho Statesman – 8.23.16
Reports Cites Mental Health Treatment Gaps at California’s DJJ Facilities
The Chronicle of Social Change – 8.23.16
For LGBTQ Youth, Schools’ Failures May Mean Higher Risk Of Criminalization
The Huffington Post – 8.23.16
Trauma of Witnessing Police Violence Is Not Lost on Children
The Chicago Reporter – 8.22.16
The End To Abusive Solitary Confinement of Juveniles in California Is Finally in Sight
Los Angeles Times – 8.21.16
Women Veterans Have Elevated Suicide Rates, Sexual Assault Major Factor
Los Angeles Daily News – 8.20.16
A Suicidologist’s New Challenge: The George Washington Bridge
The New York Times – 8.19.16
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