• Mon. Apr 22nd, 2024

House Committee Approves Legislation to Establish I Matter Youth Mental Health Program as Permanent

BySamantha Johnson

Apr 2, 2024
House Committee Approves Legislation to Establish I Matter Youth Mental Health Program as Permanent

The House Health & Human Services Committee in Denver, CO has approved legislation sponsored by Representatives Kyle Brown and Manny Rutinel to make the I Matter youth mental health program permanent. The bill, SB24-001, passed by a vote of 9-4. Representative Kyle Brown expressed pride in carrying this legislation to ensure that Colorado youth have access to no-cost therapy through the I Matter Program. The program has helped over 11,000 kids receive therapeutic services for mental health challenges such as anxiety, depression, and substance use disorders.

Representative Manny Rutinel emphasized the importance of passing this bill to continue providing no-cost mental health care services through the I Matter program. He stressed that mental health services should not be limited by a family’s income, and this legislation aims to break down barriers that prevent kids from accessing the care they need to learn, grow, and thrive. The I Matter program connects youth with licensed mental health therapists for up to six free virtual counseling sessions, and the bill seeks to make this program permanent rather than expiring on June 30, 2024.

Established in the 2021 legislative session and expanded by HB22-1243, the I Matter program has served over 11,000 Colorado youth since its inception, providing over 50,000 counseling sessions. Additionally, a law passed in 2023 allows school districts to offer mental health screenings in schools to support students’ access to mental health care. As a result, there has been a 30 percent decrease in youth suicide in 2023 compared to the previous year, according to the Colorado 2023 Kids Count report.

By Samantha Johnson

As a dedicated content writer at newshuwa.com, I weave words into captivating stories that inform and engage our audience. With a passion for storytelling and a keen eye for detail, I strive to craft articles that not only inform but also inspire discussion and curiosity. Whether delving into breaking news or exploring thought-provoking features, I aim to deliver dynamic and impactful content that resonates with our readers. Through my work, I aspire to spark conversation, educate, and entertain, ensuring that each piece I create contributes to the rich tapestry of information on our platform.

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