Our Core Mission Statement:
The mission of Your Life Matters Empowerment Alliance is to advocate for those who have felt marginalized or minoritized as a result of bullying. Our goal is to promote peace, to teach conflict resolution, and to eradicate bullying in all of its forms. We believe in the decency and authenticity of the human spirit.
We ask you to join and support us. You can donate through our Guidestar profile by clicking on the Guidestar icon on the right hand side or on the donate button above. Click on the link below to learn more about how your donations can help prevent bullying today.
The Facts on Bullying:
IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA:
28% of United States students in grades 6 -12 have experienced bullying. 20% of United States students in grades 9 – 12 have experienced bullying. Only about 20 to 30% of students who are bullied notify adults about the bullying.
In general, the United States has an about average amount of bullying when compared to other countries according to a World Health Organization Survey. (https://www.stopbullying.gov/
60.3 million U. S. workers are effected by workplace bullying. (http://www.workplacebullying.org/)
75% of employees surveyed had been affected by workplace bullying, whether as a target or a witness. (https://www.forbes.com/)
IN THE ROANOKE METROPOLITAN STATISTICAL AREA (MSA):
The local public school division is Roanoke City Public Schools. The city is divided into 49 individually defined neighborhoods. The city is divided into four quadrants: Northwest (NW), Northeast (NE), Southwest (SW), and Southeast (SE). The city represents nearly one-third of the population of the metropolitan area, which includes the neighboring City of Salem, Town of Vinton, and the counties of Botetourt, Craig, Franklin, and Roanoke. The City of Roanoke is the largest municipality in Southwest Virginia, and is the principal municipality of the Roanoke Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA).
(Roanoke Metropolitan Statistical Area)
It is estimated that 64% of school-age children across the United States of America have been bullied. If we apply those statistics to the Roanoke Valley’s current enrollment of 29, 919 students, approximately 19, 148 students have experienced bullying in our local schools. (Researched by Colleen Burns, C. E. O. & Founder and revised by Stephen Niamke, Chairperson of Your Life Matters Empowerment Alliance).
February 3, 2019
Colleen Burns C E O & Founder Your Life Matters Empowerment Alliance Inc
PO Box 6266
Roanoke, VA 24017-0266
Thank you for contacting me about suicide prevention and mental illness. I appreciate hearing from you.
Mental illness is a silent epidemic that is causing incredible harm to our country. It devastates too many of our young people who suffer from eating disorders, survivors of recent school shootings, and the families of those 18 veterans who take their own lives on a daily basis. A recent report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found suicide accounted for nearly 45,000 deaths in 2016 alone and that nearly every state has seen increases in the suicide rate since 2000. These terrible realities serve as painful reminders of the urgent need to improve our mental healthcare system.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires all qualified health plans to include behavioral care and mental health services. The ban on pre-existing condition clauses enacted by the ACA lowers barriers to coverage for individuals and creates a mandate for coverage of mental health services. These measures will direct treatment to individuals who need it faster and more effectively. Like other diseases, mental illness is most effectively diagnosed and treated during its early stages. I believe the ACA is a step in the right direction to reforming mental healthcare coverage significantly, and I am a strong supporter of the law.
During my term as Governor of Virginia, we reformed Virginia’s mental health laws following the tragic massacre at Virginia Tech on April 16, 2007. We improved standards for mental health treatment, increased funding for community health programs, and strengthened efforts to assist college students suffering from mental stress. I also issued an executive order ensuring that those adjudicated to be mentally ill and dangerous would be entered into a national database and barred from purchasing weapons.
The previous Congress passed several important measures to improve suicide prevention. In August 2018, the Senate passed by unanimous consent the National Suicide Hotline Improvement Act to require the Federal Communications Commission to examine the feasibility of designating a three-digit dialing code for suicide prevention and to evaluate the effectiveness of the current National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, including how well it addresses the needs of veterans. Additionally, on September 18, 2018, the Senate passed the Fiscal Year 2019 Labor and Health and Human Services appropriations bill, which provides $1.56 billion for mental health programs at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, a $71 million increase over the previous year. I was pleased President Trump signed both these measures into law.
Moving forward, I will continue to support legislation that helps identify and direct resources to those in need of counseling and suicide prevention. Thank you again for contacting me.
Dear Ms. Burns,
Thank you for your email. Congratulations to each one at Your Life Matters Empowerment Alliance on becoming an American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Field Advocate. Your good work on this very important matter is to be commended.
As events are scheduled in the future, please keep us advised and the invitation can be added to the scheduling request list. Please contact me with any questions.
Congressman H. Morgan Griffith (VA-09)
17 West Main Street
Christiansburg, VA 24073