Our report found that from 2018 to 2021, the percentage of Vermont children ages 3 to 8 with anxiety, behavioral/conduct problems, and/or depression rose from 8.7 to 13.8%. During that same time, overall U.S. rates remained stable at 8%. Meanwhile, Vermont has an 18.1% vacancy rate in the workforce of Designated Mental Health Agencies and Specialized Service Agencies (as of October 2022). Our state also has the lowest residential treatment program bed availability in more than two decades.
In addition, the 2022 Vermont Early Childhood Family Needs Assessment highlighted the challenges that families had accessing mental health services due to availability. According to one caregiver, “Children’s mental health services are hard to find, even for a persistent, well educated parent.”
In short, there’s ample evidence that the need for children’s mental health services is growing—both in the number of children requiring services, and the acuity of those needs.
We are at a critical moment in the continuing public health emergency of childhood mental health—a moment that will have long-term consequences based on our action or inaction.
Registration is open for our 4th Annual Statewide Regional Council Summit on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2023, from 9 a.m. to noon, via Zoom or in person at Counseling Services of Addison County, 109 Catamount Park, Middlebury, VT. Our keynote speaker will be Dr. Joshua Sparrow (pictured), child, adolescent, and general psychiatrist, and Executive Director of […]
On Oct. 23, the State Advisory Council (SAC) formally endorsed the Policy Recommendations of the Vermont Early Childhood State Advisory Council Network for 2024! These recommendations represent the most pressing and actionable priorities for early childhood stakeholders throughout the Building Bright Futures Network. We also released a new Policy Playbook explaining what the recommendations mean, […]
“The feel-good is great, but the real feel-good is doing something that lasts longer than the duration of this grant funding.” That is what Alex Beck, Welcoming Communities Manager for the Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation (BDCC), told me toward the end of our conversation about BDCC’s successful 2023 pilot program to train New Vermonters in […]