Children’s Law Center Executive Director Judith Sandalow recently shared her Department of Behavioral Health budget testimony with the DC Council’s Committee on Health. Year after year, CLC testifies that many of the children we work with — children in the foster care system or receiving special education services — only need our services because their mental health needs have gone unaddressed. Many of these same children have faced multiple adverse childhood experiences resulting in complex trauma and need access to high quality services to achieve stability.
Addressing the trauma our children have experienced and meeting their mental health needs have never been more relevant or more urgent for our District. The investments we make in our budget can help mitigate harms caused by years of structural racism and inequity which have been highlighted by the pandemic crisis and recent protests. Providing mental health supports to our children at a time when they are experiencing high levels of emotional stress and trauma must be prioritized in our budget.
Read the full testimony here: