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DBHIDS Statement on Recent School Tragedies

Days after a series of ruthless, racially motivated acts in Buffalo, N.Y., Dallas, and Laguna Woods, Calif., the nation is again in shock following the indescribable attack in Uvalde, Texas, that left 19 children and two adults dead. Today, we reach out to extend our condolences to the families and communities impacted by these tragedies.

It’s almost too much to bear. Young, defenseless boys and girls looking forward to the conclusion of the school year – that they will never see. Their friends and classmates forever scarred with the vivid memories of what happened. And a nation trying to process how and why these things continue to happen.

And while the focus is on these tragedies, Philadelphia continues to wrestle with multiple incidents throughout the City, including the shooting of three teens this week near Simon Gratz High School that concluded a weekend in which there were at least 18 shootings, six homicides, and eight stabbings.

The City of Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services (DBHIDS) recognizes that traumatic events such as these can have lasting and significant effects.

But please know that many may be feeling afraid or concerned right now. It’s OK to not be OK. You’re not alone. DBHIDS is here to help.

Children and parents can access multiple supports and services, including Student Assistance Programs, Children’s Crisis Response Centers, the Philadelphia Alliance for Child Trauma Services (PACTS), and more. Click for details.

And DBHIDS’ trauma support services, including the Network of Neighbors, and multiple community engagement programs and collaborations, can help you process the impacts of trauma and connect you with appropriate support. Click for details.

In addition, the National Child Traumatic Stress Network has developed resources to help children, families, educators, and communities navigate what they are seeing and hearing, acknowledge their feelings, and find ways to cope together.

DBHIDS, along with the City of Philadelphia and our network of provider partners, have developed these supports and others to help people in need. Visit our Boost Your Mood page at DBHIDS.org/Boost for easy access to the above resources as well as additional tip sheets, phone numbers, expert advice, a free and anonymous self-assessment tool, and more. Or call member services at 888-545-2600 to be connected to support and treatment.

Thank you,

Jill Bowen, Ph.D.
DBHIDS Commissioner