SIMMONS SB 4028 rCHICAGO- Youth in Illinois will now begin to receive specialized education on mental health resources after a measure championed by State Senator Mike Simmons (D-Chicago) becomes law.

“This measure addresses a critical gap in the support systems that we need to offer our youth to be able to remain emotionally well,” Simmons said. “Our youth have been so resilient during these past few years, but many of the broader issues amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic have put a severe strain on the mental health of our young people. It’s imperative that we prioritize the mental health and well-being of our young people and center the experiences they are voicing and actually living through.” 

Senate Bill 4028 will ensure that the curricula for elementary and secondary schools would be required to include how and where to find mental health resources in the state. The measure helps make students aware of mental health services that are available to them and helps erase the broader stigma behind mental health.

The measure was in part inspired by two of Simmons’ Youth People’s Legislative Councils, where Simmons discussed with young people themselves the issues that are salient to them such as violence and access to mental health as part of his mission to empower young people to become more involved in policy making.

“The struggle to find adequate resources for mental health is an issue that I hear time and time again when I meet with young people in the district I represent,” Simmons said. “I am pleased that we will begin to deliver practical resources to support our youth directly in our schools.”

Senate Bill 4028 was signed into law and takes effect immediately.

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