Sandy Hook Advisory Commission Hears Testimony On Trauma Services, School Crisis Response, Mental Health

by Categorized: Newtown Date:

On Friday, the governor\’s Sandy Hook Advisory Commission heard testimony from experts on mental health, disaster response, and school safety. The Sandy Hook Advisory Commission was created by the governor and charged with studying policy and making recommendations on gun violence prevention, mental health, and school safety.

Mental Health/Trauma Services

Department of Children and Families Commissioner Joette Katz warned against the \”superficial response by many to conflate mental illness and violent behavior.\” She urged the commission to ensure that \”mental illness is…addressed as a public health not a criminal justice issue.\”

Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services Commissioner Pat Rehmer said that in the wake of Newtown, the demand for mental health services has increased.

Disaster Response

\”Because school shootings have very unique aspects, they may require a specific [disaster] plan,\” said Rehmer, who discussed the way her department intervened at schools following the Sandy Hook shooting.

\”School responses varied from 1 week to almost 2 months at the Sandy Hook school,\” she said, and voiced the need for increased resources and better training that includes first aid psychological training and trauma intervention in schools.

Department of Public Health Commissioner Jewel Mullen asked the state to address disaster response in municipalities as well because \”a school system\’s response and recovery are linked to that of it\’s town.\”

She also called for a standardized school response plan.

\”Given Connecticut\’s de-centralized government, there may not be a one-size fits all framework for assisting at each school, but there ought to be a basic framework,\” Mullen said.

School Security

\”One need not create a fortress in order to fortify a facility,\” said Department of Education Commissioner Stefan Pryor. \”How can school design naturally coordinate school security efforts?\” he asked. \”There is sophisticated and sensible and sensitive design work that can be done…we must commit ourselves to those approaches or we will regret what we have done to our schools.\”

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4 thoughts on “Sandy Hook Advisory Commission Hears Testimony On Trauma Services, School Crisis Response, Mental Health

  1. Tom Volpe

    Keeping it real! I find it hilarious that Pat Rehmer testifies on behalf of needed services. This so-called commissioner of DMHAS endorsed the closure of Cedar Crest Hospital, lying to the public how the clients were all placed in suitable housing. The problem with state services is that the Commissioners are all political appointees who drone on the company line to protect their own pensions. Areas of this state, like Waterbury, have a paucity of residential services. The mentally ill roam the streets until they re-arrested and suffer the indignity of incarceration. Garner Correctional has the largest infirmary in the state. Wasn’t Fairfield Hills in Newtown also? I guess the suburban born and residing Commissioners dont mind where the mentally ill sleep. Health care costs money and a resilent will to truly help. To date, we the people are not up for that task.

  2. America Is Dying

    Thank you for joining the NRA. We appreciate your interest in protecting and preserving our Second Amendment rights and promoting safe, responsible gun ownership.

    I could defend the NRA’s position. It’s called the 2nd amendment. Now, we can do it the easy way, or we can do it the hard way. I can assure you that millions of legal gun owners will not be bullied and stand down. As U.S. Marine Joshua Boston explained so succinctly to a CNN mannequin that was interviewing him: “An unconstitutional law is NOT a law.”

    All of the treasonous vomit that this so-called newspaper and the rest of the lamestream media feed to the masses will not change that fact. Time for them to face reality, before it faces them.

  3. Tina Spokes RN

    Access to mental health services needs to be available and affordable for young adults and their families. More work on decreasing the stigma of having mental illness should continue. Many individuals with mental health issues live fulfilling lives as long as they have a support system and take medication as prescribed.

    People with chronic, unstable mental illness need 24 hr. / 7 days / week supervision. CT should not have closed 2 state mental health hospitals (Norwich, Cedar Crest) that treated adults without having reliable, comprehensive, mental health service available to individuals with chronic, treatment resistent, mental illness.

    Perhaps a special lottery ticket could be developed specifically for raising funds for mental health services.

Comments are closed.