Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB2152
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Full Text of HB2152  101st General Assembly




State of Illinois
2019 and 2020


Introduced , by Rep. Emanuel Chris Welch


New Act

    Creates the Mental Health Early Action on Campus Act. Provides for intent, legislative findings, purposes of the Act, and definitions. Provides that to raise mental health awareness on college campuses, each public college or university in this State must complete specified tasks. Provides that the board of trustees of each public college or university must designate an expert panel to develop and implement policies and procedures that (i) advise students, faculty, and staff on the proper procedures for identifying and addressing the needs of students exhibiting symptoms of mental health conditions, (ii) promote understanding of the rules of Section 504 of the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 to increase knowledge and understanding of student protections under the law, and (iii) provide training if appropriate. Provides that because peer support programs may be beneficial in improving the emotional well-being of the student population, each public college or university must develop and implement a peer support program utilizing student peers to support individuals living with mental health conditions on campus; specifies best practices for the peer support programs. Provides that each public college or university must form strategic partnerships with local mental health service providers to improve overall campus mental wellness and augment on-campus capacity; specifies what the partnerships must include. Requires the Board of Higher Education to develop a Technical Assistance Center; specifies the duties of the Center. Requires each public college or university to evaluate the required programs under the Act using specified criteria. Effective July 1, 2020.

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1    AN ACT concerning education.
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4    Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
5Mental Health Early Action on Campus Act.
6    Section 5. Intent. This Act is intended to address gaps in
7mental health services on college campuses across Illinois,
8including both 2-year and 4-year institutions, through
9training, peer support, and community-campus partnerships.
10    Section 10. Findings. The General Assembly finds all of the
12        (1) Mental health is a pressing and growing issue on
13    college campuses across this State and the country. A
14    recent national survey found that one in 4 college students
15    are treated for or diagnosed with a mental health condition
16    and one in 5 has considered suicide.
17        (2) About 75% of all mental health conditions start by
18    age 24, with higher rates of diagnosed disorders in
19    college-aged students. College counseling center directors
20    believe mental health conditions among students on their
21    campuses are increasing, signaling a growing issue that
22    must be addressed.



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1        (3) Students who come from low-income households are
2    more likely to have a mental health condition.
3        (4) Between 2007 and 2017, the diagnosis rate of
4    college students increased from 22% to 36%, indicating a
5    higher need for services. Treatment rates over the same
6    period increased by 15%.
7        (5) Young adults are less likely to receive mental
8    health support than any other age group. College campuses
9    can play a big role in addressing this challenge. Over 70%
10    of Illinois high school graduates enroll in a postsecondary
11    program shortly after graduation.
12        (6) College-aged students are more accepting of mental
13    health services than the general population, but most
14    struggle accessing them. An overwhelming 96% of college
15    students reported they would provide support to peers whom
16    they knew were thinking about suicide.
17        (7) Many students lack knowledge of mental health signs
18    and symptoms and do not know how to help or where to refer
19    their friends for services.
20        (8) Services offered by most college campuses are
21    limited in scope and capacity, with 67% of campus
22    counseling center directors saying that their campus
23    psychiatric service capacity is inadequate or does not meet
24    student demand.
25        (9) Combined with a dearth of available services, the
26    vast majority of students do not seek out services, and



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1    many students who complete a suicide never received
2    on-campus services. Paying for community-based services is
3    an issue for about half of students. Combining insufficient
4    on-campus services with unaffordable community resources
5    leaves students on their own.
6    Section 15. Purpose. The purpose of this Act is to
7accomplish all of the following:
8        (1) Further identify students with mental health needs
9    and connect them to services.
10        (2) Increase access to support services on college
11    campuses.
12        (3) Increase access to clinical mental health services
13    on college campuses and in the surrounding communities for
14    college students.
15        (4) Empower students through peer-to-peer support and
16    training on identifying mental health needs and resources.
17        (5) Reduce administrative policies that put an undue
18    burden on students seeking leave for their mental health
19    conditions through technical assistance and training.
20    Section 20. Definitions. As used in this Act:
21    "Advisor" means a staff member who provides academic,
22professional, and personal support to students.
23    "Campus security" means a law enforcement officer who has
24completed his or her probationary period and is employed as a



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1security officer or campus police officer by a public college
2or university.
3    "Linkage agreement" means a formal agreement between a
4public college or university and an off-campus mental health
5provider or agency.
6    "Mental health condition" means a symptom consistent with a
7mental illness, as defined under Section 1-129 of the Mental
8Health and Developmental Disabilities Code, or a diagnosed
9mental illness.
10    "Public college or university" means any public community
11college subject to the Public Community College Act, the
12University of Illinois, Southern Illinois University, Chicago
13State University, Eastern Illinois University, Governors State
14University, Illinois State University, Northeastern Illinois
15University, Northern Illinois University, Western Illinois
16University, and any other public university, college, or
17community college now or hereafter established or authorized by
18the General Assembly.
19    "Recovery model" means the model developed by the federal
20Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration that
21defines the process of recovery and includes the 4 major
22dimensions that support a life in recovery, which are health,
23home, purpose, and community.
24    "Resident assistant" means a student who is responsible for
25supervising and assisting other, typically younger, students
26who live in the same student housing facility.



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1    "Telehealth" means the evaluation, diagnosis, or
2interpretation of electronically transmitted patient-specific
3data between a remote location and a licensed health care
4professional that generates interaction or treatment
5recommendations. "Telehealth" includes telemedicine and the
6delivery of health care services provided by an interactive
7telecommunications system, as defined in subsection (a) of
8Section 356z.22 of the Illinois Insurance Code.
9    Section 25. Awareness. To raise mental health awareness on
10college campuses, each public college or university must do all
11of the following:
12        (1) Develop and implement an annual student
13    orientation session aimed at raising awareness about
14    mental health conditions.
15        (2) Assess courses and seminars available to students
16    through their regular academic experiences and implement
17    mental health awareness curricula if opportunities for
18    integration exist.
19        (3) Create and feature a page on its website or mobile
20    application with information dedicated solely to the
21    mental health resources available to students at the public
22    college or university and in the surrounding community.
23        (4) Distribute messages related to mental health
24    resources that encourage help-seeking behavior through the
25    online learning platform of the public college or



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1    university during high stress periods of the academic year,
2    including, but not limited to, midterm or final
3    examinations. These stigma-reducing strategies must be
4    based on documented best practices.
5        (5) Three years after the effective date of this Act,
6    implement an online screening tool to raise awareness and
7    establish a mechanism to link or refer students of the
8    public college or university to services. Screenings and
9    resources must be available year round for students and, at
10    a minimum, must (i) include validated screening tools for
11    depression, an anxiety disorder, an eating disorder,
12    substance use, alcohol-use disorder, post-traumatic stress
13    disorder, and bipolar disorder, (ii) provide resources for
14    immediate connection to services, if indicated, including
15    emergency resources, (iii) provide general information
16    about all mental health-related resources available to
17    students of the public college or university, and (iv)
18    function anonymously.
19        (6) At least once per term and at times of high
20    academic stress, including midterm or final examinations,
21    provide students information regarding online screenings
22    and resources.
23    Section 30. Training.
24    (a) The board of trustees of each public college or
25university must designate an expert panel to develop and



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1implement policies and procedures that (i) advise students,
2faculty, and staff on the proper procedures for identifying and
3addressing the needs of students exhibiting symptoms of mental
4health conditions, (ii) promote understanding of the rules of
5Section 504 of the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the
6federal Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 to increase
7knowledge and understanding of student protections under the
8law, and (iii) provide training if appropriate.
9    (b) The Technical Assistance Center under Section 45 shall
10set initial standards for policies and procedures referenced in
11subsection (a) to ensure statewide consistency.
12    (c) All resident assistants in a student housing facility,
13advisors, and campus security of a public college or university
14must participate in a national Mental Health First Aid training
15course or a similar program prior to the commencement of their
16duties. Training must include the policies and procedures
17developed by the public college or university referenced under
18subsection (a).
19    Section 35. Peer support.
20    (a) Because peer support programs may be beneficial in
21improving the emotional well-being of the student population,
22each public college or university must develop and implement a
23peer support program utilizing student peers to support
24individuals living with mental health conditions on campus.
25Peer support programs may be housed within resident assistant



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1programs, counseling centers, or wellness centers on campus.
2    (b) Peer support programs must utilize best practices for
3peer support, including, but not limited to, (i) utilizing the
4tenets of the recovery model for mental health, (ii) adequate
5planning and preparation, including standardizing guidance and
6practices, identifying needs of the target population, and
7aligning program goals to meet those needs, (iii) clearly
8articulating policies, especially around role boundaries and
9confidentiality, (iv) systematic screening with defined
10selection criteria for peer supporters, such as communication
11skills, leadership ability, character, previous experience or
12training, and ability to serve as a positive role model, (v)
13identifying benefits from peer status, such as experiential
14learning, social support, leadership, and improved
15self-confidence, (vi) continuing education for peer supporters
16to support each other and improve peer support skills, and
17(vii) flexibility in availability by offering services through
18drop-in immediate support and the ability to book appointments.
19    Section 40. Local partnerships.
20    (a) Each public college or university must form strategic
21partnerships with local mental health service providers to
22improve overall campus mental wellness and augment on-campus
23capacity. The strategic partnerships must include linkage
24agreements with off-campus mental health service providers
25that establish a foundation for referrals for students when



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1needs cannot be met on campus due to capacity or preference of
2the student. The strategic partnerships must also include (i)
3avenues for on-campus and off-campus mental health service
4providers to increase visibility to students via marketing and
5outreach, (ii) opportunities to engage the student body through
6student outreach initiatives like mindfulness workshops or
7campus-wide wellness fairs, and (iii) opportunities to support
8awareness and training requirements under this Act.
9    (b) Through a combination of on-campus capacity,
10off-campus linkage agreements with mental health service
11providers, and contracted telehealth therapy services, each
12public college or university must maintain a ratio of one
13clinical, non-student staff member to 1,250 students. If
14linkage agreements are used, the agreements must include the
15capacity of students providers are expected to serve within the
16agency. Five years after the effective date of this Act, each
17public college or university must maintain a ratio of one
18clinical, non-student staff member to 1,000 students. Funding
19made available through this Act must be used by a public
20college or university to build on-campus clinical capacities
21under this subsection.
22    (c) Each public college or university must work with local
23resources, such as on-campus mental health counseling centers
24or wellness centers, local mental health service providers, or
25non-providers, such as affiliates of the National Alliance on
26Mental Illness, and any other resources to meet the awareness



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1and training requirements under Sections 25 and 30 of this Act.
2    Section 45. Technical Assistance Center. The Board of
3Higher Education must develop a Technical Assistance Center
4that is responsible for all of the following:
5        (1) Developing standardized policies for medical leave
6    related to mental health conditions for students of a
7    public college or university, which may be adopted by the
8    public college or university.
9        (2) Providing tailored support to public colleges or
10    universities in reviewing policies related to students
11    living with mental health conditions and their academic
12    standing.
13        (3) Establishing initial standards for policies and
14    procedures under subsection (a) of Section 30.
15        (4) Disseminating best practices around peer support
16    programs, including widely accepted selection criteria for
17    individuals serving in a peer support role.
18        (5) Developing statewide standards and best practices
19    for partnerships between local mental health agencies and
20    college campuses across this State.
21        (6) Collecting, analyzing, and disseminating data
22    related to mental health needs and academic engagement
23    across this State.
24        (7) Housing data collected by each public college or
25    university related to Section 50 and analyzing and



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1    disseminating best practices to each public college or
2    university based on that data.
3        (8) Monitoring and evaluating linkage agreements
4    required under Section 40 to ensure required capacity is
5    met by each public college or university.
6        (9) Facilitating a learning community across all
7    public colleges or universities to support capacity
8    building and learning across those institutions.
9    Section 50. Evaluation. Each public college or university
10must evaluate the following programs under this Act in the
11following manner:
12        (1) Awareness and training programs under Sections 25
13    and 30 must be monitored for effectiveness and quality by
14    the public college or university. Monitoring measures
15    shall include, but are not limited to, (i) increased
16    understanding of mental health conditions, (ii) reduced
17    stigma toward mental health conditions, (iii) increased
18    understanding of mental health resources available to
19    students, (iv) increased understanding of resources for
20    mental health emergencies available to students, and (v)
21    viewing each mental health resource website or mobile
22    application of the public college or university.
23        (2) Peer support programs under Section 35 must be
24    monitored for effectiveness and quality by the public
25    college or university. Monitoring measures shall include,



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1    but are not limited to, (i) improved symptomatology, (ii)
2    if needed, connection to additional services, (iii)
3    student satisfaction, (iv) wait time for drop-in
4    appointments, (v) wait time for scheduled appointments,
5    and (vi) satisfaction with the training curriculum for peer
6    supporters.
7        (3) Local partnership programs under Section 40 must be
8    monitored for effectiveness and quality by the public
9    college or university. Monitoring measures shall include,
10    but are not limited to, (i) wait time for drop-in
11    appointments for on-campus or off-campus telehealth
12    therapy providers, (ii) wait time for scheduled
13    appointments for on-campus or off-campus telehealth
14    therapy providers, (iii) the number of linkage agreements
15    and contracts in place based on student population, (iv)
16    student satisfaction with on-campus or off-campus
17    telehealth therapy providers, (v) range of treatment
18    models offered to students, (vi) average length of stay in
19    treatment, (vii) number and range of student outreach
20    initiatives, such as telehealth mindfulness workshops or
21    campus-wide wellness fairs, and (viii) number of students
22    being served annually.
23    Section 55. Funding. This Act is subject to appropriation,
24and no Section of this Act may be funded by new student fees.
25Public colleges or universities may seek federal funding or



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1private grants, if available, to support the provisions of this
3    Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect July 1,