SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – A well-known actress took some time away from Hollywood to testify before Congress in hopes of making a change.
Youth Suicide Rates are on the rise across the country particularly among African-American youth.
“It breaks my heart to know that 5 year old children are contemplating life and death,” said Taraji P. Henson.
Henson made her case before the Congressional Black Caucus to advocate for attention and special funds to address the emotional needs of black children.
“We’re expecting these children to come from traumatic experiences at home and we’re expecting them to go to school and learn and it’s just not fair,we can’t give up on our kids,” said Henson.
Local Child Psychologist Dr. Mahesh Gupta says the trend is disturbing.
“A combination of all these things put them to a disadvantage. The children get whatever they get in terms of mental health through their environment, through their parents. There are several resources to get our mental health strong and to get us informed of the venues available to us for progress,” said Dr. Gupta.
Friday marked the second hearing on the topic of black youth mental health. Members of the Congressional Black Caucus are now on a nationwide tour to raise awareness.