Senator Anthony J. Portantino, D – La Cañada Flintridge, introduced SB 972 which would require all public, charter, and private schools to print a suicide prevention hotline number on the back of students identiﬁcation cards. The measure would be enacted July 1, 2019 for grades seven through twelve and all higher education institutions. Adolescent suicide and self-inﬂicted injury are a serious social and public health concern. Senator Portantino has a distinguished record supporting the well-being of kids at all levels. He is a strong advocate for suicide prevention and mental health policy.
“It is a little bittersweet for me to introduce SB 972, because I’m proud to do it but I’m saddened that it’s necessary. Providing this information is a simple thing to do and will protect our students who face mental illness and suicidal thoughts. As a community, we should provide potential lifesaving information to prevent unfortunate events” commented Senator Portantino.
Although just introduced, the measure has garnered a signiﬁcant number of co-authors including, Senator Atkins, D-San Diego, Senator Beall, D- San Jose, Senator Lara, D-Bell Gardens, Senator Leyva, D – Chino, Senator Newman, D-Fullerton, and Senator Wiener, D- San Francisco.
“After my brother’s suicide, I was saddened to learn that so many friends, neighbors, and strangers had family members who struggled with suicide. I don’t want to read about another young person who takes his or her own life. I am committed to carry legislation that will bring mental health out of the shadows into everyday conversation without stigma. If SB 972 saves only one life it is well worth our efforts” concluded Portantino.