Bills to support children’s mental health come with lofty price tags

Three ambitious bills that aim to tackle the growing crisis of children’s mental health in Connecticut would devote tens of millions in funding to a broad range of initiatives, including a grant program to attract and retain child psychiatrists, expanded mobile crisis services and additional staff across multiple state departments to manage new projects.

The state’s nonpartisan Office of Fiscal Analysis noted that one of the measures – Senate Bill 2 – could cost $202 to $210 million across the 2023 and 2024 fiscal years to support increased child care rates for providers and their employers. The proposal also would require $13.2 million to broaden access to mobile crisis services and up to $1 million to evaluate “the impact of social media and mobile phone use on students’ mental health.”

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