WASHINGTON, DC – Energy and Commerce Committee Republican Leader Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) today issued the following statement regarding World Teen Mental Wellness Day.
“This year’s World Teen Mental Wellness Day must be recognized with a unified call to reopen our schools immediately. It’s critical for teen development so they feel connected and engaged. School is where so many discover a sense of purpose and build friendships that also provide emotional support.
“A day doesn’t go by in my community that I don’t hear from a parent worried about their child in despair. That includes a mom and mental health care provider in Eastern Washington whose caseload has jumped 75 percent. In just 10 days, she told me seven teens reported self harm behavior and suicide attempts. All had zero history but the isolation had taken a severe toll. Another mother told me her daughter sleeps during her ‘off-days’ in hybrid school–a time that would normally be spent engaging with her peers and teachers if schools were fully in-person.
“These are just two stories of many other countless examples of teens who need hope and healing. It’s clear the COVID-19 pandemic has only magnified the teen mental health crisis in this country. Before it gets even worse, we must take action to ensure our children have access to the education and mental health support they need.”
Note: If you know someone in crisis call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or text the Crisis Text Line (text HELLO to 741741). Both services are free and available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.