“The challenges today’s generation of young people face are unprecedented and uniquely hard to navigate. And the effect these challenges have had on their mental health is devastating.“
Among the challenges cited by Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy in the advisory is gun violence. As reported by The Trace, some of the advisory highlights include:
- Minimize lethal means access for people at risk: That includes guns and other things that can facilitate self-harm: “If you choose to keep firearms in the home, ensure that they are stored safely: unloaded and locked up (e.g., in a lock box or safe).”
- Expand suicide prevention, mental health crisis services: Implementing the national 988 mental health crisis and suicide hotline and increasing trauma-informed care for at-risk children were among the specifics.
- Utilize credible messengers and trusted community partners: The report points to community-led interventions like hospital-based violence intervention programs to help mitigate risk factors for violence.
- Call on journalists to report responsibly on trauma and mental health: In addition to striving for accuracy and sensitive coverage, Murthy writes, media should investigate potential solutions and include “positive messages and stories of hope and healing” in coverage of crises like natural disasters or mass violence.