FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 3, 2019
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
GUILLEN AIMS TO DEVELOP MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES FOR ADOLESCENTS
AUSTIN - State Rep. Ryan Guillen (D-Rural South Texas) is working to develop mental health and behavioral resources for Texas adolescents as an author of HB 10, which has passed the House. The basic intention behind the legislation is to facilitate the research necessary for identifying the underlying causes of mental illness and behavioral health issues, through the creation of the Texas Mental and Behavioral Health Research Institute.
"Events such as the 2018 Santa Fe High School shooting have exposed a lack of understanding behind adolescent behavioral issues and mental illness," Guillen noted. "Subsequent investigations on the juveniles who commit these horrific crimes often revealed instances of prior behavior that should have indicated the threat they posed to their communities."
Had their behavior initially been recognized as a red flag, the atrocities they would eventually come to commit may have been avoided entirely. Not only would their innocent victims still be alive today, but the individuals suffering could have received proper treatment in order to improve their mental health. HB 10 seeks to establish the Texas Mental and Behavioral Health Research Institute, which would be charged with identifying best practices, leadership, and vision for addressing child and adolescent behavioral health needs. The measure would help to lay the groundwork necessary for the implementation of a formal protocol in order to govern the process of handling adolescents who exhibit warning signs in the future. Additionally, Guillen is an author of another measure that would help to increase the number of mental health professionals in Texas schools to more accurately reflect the size of the student bodies they support.
"If we continue to fail to offer adolescents with adequate and well-informed support, the consequences can be dire," Guillen concluded.
Serving ten rural South Texas counties in the Texas House of Representatives, Ryan Guillen is known for his hard work, fierce independence, and relentless efforts for South Texas families. Recently, Capitol Inside called him a “House Bill Machine,” and a “one-person assembly line for legislation.” Since elected, few other legislators have passed more bills than Guillen. Sign up for updates at ryanguillen.com, facebook.com/representative.guillen, and twitter.com/ryanguillen