Tell the Governor: Sign SB 968 for CSU student access to mental health counseling

CFA urges all CSU faculty to let Governor Brown know our state universities need more mental health counselors to help our students. Ask him to sign SB 968, a bill headed to his desk now.

As described in a Headlines report last week, all faculty are affected when our students cannot get timely help to cope with the pressure caused by the high cost of living in our state as well as by racial micro-aggressions, and attacks on their perceived immigration status, even as they work so hard to complete their college degrees.

The CFA Counselor Faculty Committee has reported for years about the decline in consistent and timely student access to mental health counseling on CSU campuses, even though that is an essential ingredient to helping students stay in school and move toward graduation.

This year, with bill author State Senator Richard Pan, a pediatrician who understands these issues, the counselors have campaigned for SB 968 to increase the number of counselors per students to one per 1500, encourage hiring counselors as full-time staff and who reflect the diversity of the student body, and report on the number of CSU student suicides—a grim statistic that should be reported publicly.

Please click here to ask the Governor to sign this bill!  

See related articles in the Golden Gate Xpress (San Francisco State student news) and the Daily 49er (CSU Long Beach student news).

MORE CFA-SPONSORED BILLS ON GOVERNOR’S DESK. The two-year legislation cycle at the State Capitol ended Friday and two CFA-sponsored bills in addition to SB 968 are going to the governor for his signature.

SB 1421 will make policing in California more transparent. This “Right to Know” bill would modify the special secrecy afforded police officers, making the record public in sustained cases of sexual assault or dishonesty in criminal investigations. SB 1421 also would make public records of  police shootings and other serious use-of-force incidents. A community fact sheet developed by a coalition of backers explains the reasoning behind this bill. CFA joins with the coalition in calling on Governor Brown to sign SB 1421.

Lastly, AB 2505 requires the CSU administration to a report on current hiring practices for all CSU positions, including executive, management, faculty, and non-faculty support staff. The report also would compare hiring practices at the CSU to the best practices for hiring persons to similar positions at UC and the California Community Colleges. This bill responds to a recent audit finding that the CSU administration operates without a coherent, meaningful plan when hiring managers. CFA urges the governor to sign.

PHOTO: The CFA Counselor Faculty Committee set up an art installation—Tissues for Issues—to illustrate the need for more student access to mental health counseling on CSU campuses. This display was at Cal Poly Pomona. Learn more on the Tissues for Issues Facebook page.