Center for School Behavioral Health Advocacy Task Force Legislative Update - 4.12.17

LEGISLATIVE UPDATE

April 12, 2017

Hearing Updates

In the past seven days, the Center for School Behavioral Health at MHA of Greater Houston has had THREE committee hearings before the Texas House of Representatives!

On Tuesday April 4, HB 2623 (Allen, Alma | Thompson, Senfronia) was heard before the House Public Education Committee.  Latashia Crenshaw from the Harris County Juvenile Probation Department and Natalia Fernández from Spring Branch Independent School District provided testimony in support of the bill.  

Across the hall, HB 11 (Price) was heard in the House Public Health Committee that Tuesday, as well. Mental Health America of Greater Houston registered our support of the bill, which is one of the most comprehensive attempts to fully integrate mental health services and best practices into Texas’ public schools.

On Monday April 10th, the House County Affairs Committee considered HB 4142 (Coleman). HB 4142 is Representative Coleman’s omnibus bill relating to counties’ and other governmental entities’ operations regarding behavioral health. This bill includes language specifically pertaining to trauma-informed training in school districts. Betsy Blanks, Center for School Behavioral Health Manager of Professional Development, provided written testimony in support of the trauma language within the omnibus.

Currently, all three bills are pending in committee.

HB 3887 (Coleman) and HB 3853 (Coleman) Referred to Committee!

Both HB 3887 (Coleman) and HB 3853 (Coleman) have been referred to the House Public Education Committee. We are still awaiting hearing dates on these bills - more information coming soon!

Pizza and Politics

Thank you to those of you who came out to our inaugural Pizza and Politics event on April 11! We are happy to report it was a smashing success! In two short hours, we made 323 calls to legislators:

HB 2623 (Allen) had 112 calls

HB 3887 (Coleman) had 32 calls

HB 11 (Price) had 75 calls

HB 2466 (Davis) had 33 calls

HB 4142 (Colman) had 71 calls

We also had a THREE-WAY TIE for the most calls made. Tiffany Pham, Bria Bonnette and Deidre Johnson each made 31 calls! All three ladies will receive a special reward (and our eternal gratitude, of course) for being total champs and putting advocacy into action. Congratulations!

ACTION ITEM OF THE WEEK

Time Commitment: Less than one minute

In gratitude for your work and the wins that we’ve had this week, take a moment to enjoy our success and read a haiku penned by Lauren Pursley

ATF rocked out

Pizza and Politics called

Senate get ready!