House passes Galloway bill to create mental health resource network for schools

HARRISBURG, Sept. 30 – A bill sponsored by state Rep. John Galloway, D-Bucks, to help Pennsylvania schools connect families to community mental health resources unanimously passed the House today.

House Bill 2331 would create a mental health care services clearinghouse to help school personnel connect families to community mental health resources.

“Too many children struggle with untreated mental health issues, and it can be difficult for schools to provide them with the necessary care and services. This bill would create a critical network to help schools, communities and health care providers share information about mental health resources and programs,” Galloway said. “I’m grateful to my colleagues for their support and I hope the Senate will consider this legislation quickly. It’s time we make sure students receive the care they need.”

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, one in five youths younger than 14 have a mental health condition, but less than half of these children receive mental health care.

The mental health care services clearinghouse would be a publicly accessible registry of mental health care resources available across the commonwealth. In addition, this clearinghouse would allow school personnel to learn about and take advantage of existing programs and resources for their schools.

Galloway has also sponsored legislation to create a statewide children’s mental health ombudsman, who would help expand access to mental health resources for children and take steps to identify systemic issues to treatment.