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Youth Mental Health

With Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Miana Bryant & Anna King

Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Miana Bryant, founder of The Mental Elephant join Washington Post Live (Video: The Washington Post)
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Rates of children and young adults presenting at emergency departments for self-harm and suicidal thoughts are on the rise. And a recent report warned that the pandemic has exacerbated the mental health concerns already facing young people. Join Washington Post Live for a series of conversations with Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Miana Bryant, founder of The Mental Elephant, and Anna King, president of the National Parent Teacher Association, about how the last two years have impacted youth mental health, the role that social media plays and how schools are working to provide a supportive environment. They will also discuss the impact of the school shooting in Texas.

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“There’s not a lot of evidence that the United States has more mental illness than other countries. We have all the shootings, but of course we should fix our mental health system because it’s broken. And of course, there’s a story of mental illness connected to, not all, but many of these shootings…I just think we should try to find a path forward…My hope is that, especially in the aftermath of this tragedy, we can try to find some common denominator that might involve some changes to gun laws. That might involve some increased support for mental health…I’m just going to be very willing to be part of a conversation about compromise in the coming days and weeks. Because I think we do need to show parents in this country that we’re not just ignoring this. That we are going to try to bridge our differences and that’s my commitment.”- Sen. Chris Murphy(D-Conn.) (Video: Washington Post Live)
“It’s certainly something to discuss but obviously Buffalo and New York, they have red flag laws and they didn’t stop Buffalo. And the fellow, Mr. Ramos in Texas, passed a background check and that didn’t stop this tragedy. So, it’s easy to kind of draw comfort from things but you have to find solutions as well. And I think that’s what [Sen.] Chris [Murphy] is suggesting we discuss fully; I agree with him totally.” -Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) (Video: Washington Post Live)
“While we very rightly focus on the number of people who are killed in these incidents, you have to remember that every single kid in that school just went through something absolutely horrific. And there’s going to be trauma that comes with that experience that’ll be with them for a very long time. And every single person that’s killed has people that love them that are going to go through trauma…In a nation that has a spiraling rate of violence, we also have a spiraling rate of need for intervention.” -Sen. Chris Murphy(D-Conn.) (Video: Washington Post Live)
“To say I’m speechless would just be an understatement. Our children right now are faced with so many things that they shouldn’t be faced with. In America we teach our children that they have inherited life and pursuit of happiness and far too long our children have been taken from us with senseless violence and that’s not acceptable…These incidents shouldn’t happen like this…This is not a party issue. This is about our children. And my question is, do we not value the lives of our nation’s children, our educators and our families enough to pass simple measures that could save their lives?”- Anna King (Video: Washington Post Live)
“It does a lot to kids, it does a lot to parents, it does a lot to communities…Having to wake up and send your child and they don’t come home…Any parent, in any parent situation having to bury a child is traumatic, painful and difficult, so we have parents that are struggling. You have children that are now going to be traumatized. Multiple children who may not want to go back to school, who may not trust school officials anymore…It is traumatic for everyone, on every level and definitely something that has to be talked about and worked through by the community, by lawmakers and by this country.”- Miana Bryant (Video: Washington Post Live)

Miana Bryant

Founder, The Mental Elephant

Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.)

Anna King

President, National Parent Teacher Association

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.)

Content from the National Education Association

The following content is produced and paid for by a Washington Post Live event sponsor. The Washington Post newsroom is not involved in the production of this content.

(Video: Washington Post Live)

Becky S. Pringle

President, NEA