Toxic Stress

Opportunities to Improve Children’s Mental Health in Texas

Testimony to the House Select Committee on Mental Health

Texans Care for Children is a statewide, non-profit, non-partisan, multi-issue children's policy organization. We drive policy change to improve the lives of Texas children today for a stronger Texas tomorrow. We envision a Texas in which all children grow up to be healthy, safe, successful, and on a path to fulfill their promise. We appreciate all the work that the committee has done to bring attention and discussion to the far reaching effects mental illness has on Texas children, families, adults, and communities and ways Texas can improve the outcomes of those who experience mental illness and the systems that serve them.  We thank you for the opportunity to offer recommendations on ways the state can make a positive difference in supporting the mental health of children and youth.

Recommendations for Improving Texas’ Child Welfare System

Testimony to the House Human Services Committee

Several studies and the findings in the recent court case show that one of the key steps the Legislature must take is reducing CPS staff caseloads so that dedicated, hard-working employees can effectively keep children safe. Texas must also ensure children in foster care have the support they need to overcome past trauma, grow up healthy, succeed in the classroom, and develop into self-sufficient adults. Texas should provide comprehensive services to children in foster care, so they can reach their potential.