Whitmer signs bill to prevent suicides among middle, high school students

ID cards for sixth through 12th grade students must include a 24-hour crisis suicide prevention hotline
The Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
The Suicide Prevention Lifeline.(Will Thomas)
Published: Oct. 16, 2020 at 3:58 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WJRT) - Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed a bill this week aimed at preventing suicides involving middle and high school students.

The bill requires all schools that provide ID cards for students in sixth through 12th grades to print a 24-hour crisis suicide prevention hotline on the back. The Michigan House and Senate both approved the bill in September with zero votes against it.

Republican State Rep. Andrea Schroeder of Clarkston sponsored the Save Our Students plan to reduce the suicide rate among students.

“I am so thankful the governor and legislators from both political parties saw the need for this plan and came together to help make it a reality,” she said. “This initiative to connect young people with someone to listen and offer support when they need hope the most will help save lives and prevent tragedies.”

Schroeder got a suggestion for the plan from Oakland County parents Kris and Joe Miller, who lost their 15-year-old son to suicide. A classmate of Schroeder’s daughter also committed suicide a year ago.

School districts can decide which suicide prevention hotline to put on their student ID cards, and schools also can opt out of providing student IDs altogether. Any IDs that are issued, however, must include a hotline for students in grades 6 to 12.

The bill also encourages schools to prominently display information about suicide prevention, depression and anxiety from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

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