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DBHIDS Commissioner Jill Bowen Responds to Death of Tyre Nichols

January 30, 2023

The brutal, needless killing of Tyre Nichols, a 29-year-old Black man, at the hands of multiple members of the Memphis, Tenn., Police Department this month is heart-wrenching. The body-cam footage – there are no words to describe the tragic, distressing scene.

This incident – this latest incident – serves as an all-too-real reminder that the centuries of institutional racism inherent in our nation are still part of daily life for so many, especially Black and Brown individuals, families, and communities.

I write today to add my voice to that of Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and other leaders who released a joint statement following the release of the police video and to remind all people of Philadelphia that feeling overwhelmed, upset, hopeless, or depressed about incidents such as this one is understandable. It’s OK to not be OK. You’re not alone. The City of Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services (DBHIDS) is here to help.

DBHIDS strives every day to address the traumas associated with violence. If you or a loved one are experiencing a suicidal crisis or emotional distress, call or text the new suicide and crisis lifeline at 988.

Compassionate, trained professionals are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Callers will receive counseling, guidance, and direction for receiving prompt evaluation and treatment services. Callers who are deaf or hearing impaired can use their preferred relay service or dial 711 then 988.

For non-emergency care, please call the Philadelphia Community Behavioral Health hotline 24/7 at 888-545-2600. Or click to learn about other resources, such as the DBHIDS Traumatic Stress Resource Card, Violence and Trauma Toolkit, and more.

Please take care of yourself.

Thank you,

Jill Bowen, Ph.D.
DBHIDS Commissioner

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