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“Save Our Students” plan signed into Michigan Law

The initiative will connect troubled youth with a 24-hour crisis hotline.
Students in school hallway (WBAY file photo)
Students in school hallway (WBAY file photo)(WBAY)
Published: Oct. 15, 2020 at 12:38 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - Thursday Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed the “Save Our Students” bill which is aimed at preventing suicide and helping young people get help.

The plan will require schools that issue identification cards to students in grades 6-12 to include a 24-hour crisis hotline number. Suicide is the second-leading cause of death in Michigan for people ages 10-24.

Each school can select a number of their choosing, for local, statewide, or nationwide hotlines. There is no regulation that requires schools to issue student IDs.

The bill was introduced by State Rep. Andrea Schroeder and won unanimous bipartisan support in the Michigan Legislature.

“I am so thankful the governor and legislators from both political parties saw the need for this plan and came together to help make it a reality,” said Schroeder, of Oakland County’s Independence Township. “This initiative to connect young people with someone to listen and offer support when they need hope the most will help save lives and prevent tragedies.”

Following the loss of their 15-year-old son, Nikolai, parents Kris and Joe Miller of Oakland County shared their story with legislators. Schroeder was also inspired by the suicide of her daughter’s classmate last year.

The law also calls for the Department of Health and Human Services to provide schools with informative materials related to suicide prevention, depression, and anxiety. Schools are encouraged to display this information on their websites and in around school buildings.

The plan will go into effect as early as next academic year.

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