Student mental health bill gets one step closer to law in Nebraska

Senator Jen Day introduced a bill that would facilitate a stronger connection between schools and community providers in order for students to have better access to mental health care across the state.
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – It’s been no secret there has been a mental health crisis in the state of Nebraska over the past few years. The issue has only gotten worse since the pandemic so, Sen. Jen Day introduced a bill that would facilitate a stronger connection between schools and community providers in order for students to have better access to mental health care across the state.

On Monday, the bill passed to the enrollment and review phase.

LB852 would essentially require every school building in the state to have at least one designated point of contact for mental behavioral health care – for parents and students.

While some schools already have this point, Day wanted to make sure those rural areas got help as well.

“This is a bill that, that we’ve been working on for years,” Day said, “It is a necessary change so that we can ensure that there was someone in every school building to help facilitate the connection between students and parents and outside resources in the community.”

Most senators who spoke up on the floor were in support of the bill but looking for clarification on a few things.

“I know, I’ve spoken with, with my local school district in North Platte. I think they see some value. I think they have some questions about costs associated with this,” Sen. Mike Jacobson of North Platte said. “Can you explain how this works? Is this a recommendation? Is this a requirement? And how would that be funded?”

The bill would not require schools to hire anyone but rather designate a person in the building to be a point of contact.

The bill will still need to pass through three other rounds on the floor before it makes it to the Governors desk for signature.

Categories: Capitol News, Nebraska News, News