After a difficult year for students, Progressive Conservative MLA and Education Critic, Tim Halman, will re-introduce legislation to give students in-class mental health resources. Halman first introduced this legislation over a year ago.
“After the tough year for students during the pandemic, these resources just make sense,” says Halman. “It’s about erasing stigma and normalizing the experiences that students and adults have.”
The PC Party has brought forward thoughtful solutions as part of their Universal Mental Health Care plan, including increased access for mental health intake and a 9-8-8 crisis line.
“I’d like students to look at these kits the same way they would see taking a Band-Aid out of a first aid kit,” says Halman.
The proposed mental health and wellness kits will include items that can aid students experiencing some form of mental distress. Mental health professionals, employed by an education entity, will have input on appropriate materials for the kits. Some options include stress balls and fidget spinners, contact information for mental health services, small heating and cooling packs, and other items that can help aid someone experiencing a panic attack.
“The key is keeping the mental health issue from escalating on the spot,” says Halman. “These aren’t for crisis situations. They are a tool to help avoid getting to a crisis point.”
Halman, a teacher by trade, says that immediate help can make all the difference in the classroom.
“We are seeing the rate of mental health issues among young people continue to increase, and teachers continue to find it challenging when assisting students in these situations,” says Halman.
“I hope these kits provide support to teachers and students.”