Rep. Emerson: Statement on university mental health crisis
Madison- Representative Emerson released the following statement regarding mental health services on UW campuses:
“While I appreciate the recent legislative efforts to address the mental health crisis, I want to stress that these measures represent only a tentative step in the right direction. It is time to recognize that the mental health crisis demands more than modest change; it requires a comprehensive approach from all leaders in our state.
Regrettably, I observe that some of my colleagues appear content with paying lip service to mental health and passing unfunded mandates that fall short of making a substantial difference in the lives of our students. It is disheartening to witness a lack of genuine commitment to creating impactful change and prioritizing the mental well-being of our young people.
Earlier this year I co-authored AB 588, which would provide funding to student mental health services at Universities of Wisconsin. This bill is about the lives of our students who are enduring an unacceptably long wait for the help they need. It’s about providing immediate relief and fostering an environment that prioritizes mental health.
Passing AB 588 would allow our UW campuses to hire more counselors and increase programing in order to help students who are in crisis and also keep those who are hurting out of a crisis situation.
I have seen campuses rally around students, staff and faculty in time of great need. My hope is that our legislature will rally around our campuses and provide them with the critical funding that is needed to help them during this time of need. This is a shared responsibility that transcends politics, and it is my hope that we can unite for the sake of our students. Let us prioritize AB 588 and take decisive action to create a safer, more supportive environment on Wisconsin campuses.”
If you or someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis please reach out to National Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by calling 988