Children's Services Initiative Coalition
The following recommendations were then made:
- Have an approved “family friendly” resource list in each region for
families to address problems when they arise.
- Provide a service coordinator to families that can coordinate and link
the various services and providers.
- Implement prevention, intervention, and treatment services to address
- Address the gaps in children’s behavioral health services by
increasing training for providers specific to children and adolescent
specialties to include mental health clinicians, respite care providers,
day care providers, and foster care providers.
- Provide financial incentives for students in the mental health field
to specialize in the children’s services field (currently a bill in
congress that is addressing the shortage of children’s mental health
- Provide a service array that includes early identification and
intervention for children’s behavioral health screenings provided by
pediatricians and medical personnel beginning at birth and throughout
adolescence including transition services to adulthood.
- Address policies that restrict access to children’s behavioral health
- Do away with custody relinquishment merely to access services and to
ease the burden from the courts, and use saved funds for support and
direct services to families such as transportation, and respite care.
- Revise the reunification process for children removed due to
behavioral health issues, to accelerate the investigation process and
work with parents to provide the most appropriate services for
behavioral health diagnosis.
- Initiate flexible funding strategies.
- Initiate a public awareness campaign (brochures, CD’s, flyers,
video’s) on children’s behavioral health issues including substance
abuse, on signs and symptoms, known treatments, and available services.
- Widely distribute awareness materials through a variety of settings
using Nebraska Federation of Families for Children’s mental Health,
NAMI, other Nebraska family support and advocacy groups to disseminate
awareness materials to parents, physicians, behavioral health
professionals, the public, schools, churches, day care/respite
providers, businesses, etc.
- Support the dissemination of information regarding school services to
parents in an uncomplicated format that makes available qualification
requirements to receive accommodations for children with behavioral
- Address the need for community based and in-home based services for
behavioral health disorders.
- Stabilize the service system to keep essential services in place such
as school based wraparound services.
- Increase training for service professionals, school professionals, and
paraprofessionals in family centered care practices, moving toward
sanctuary models and seclusion free facilities.
- Enhance family advocacy services to assist parents to work more
effectively with the service system, so that parents’ voices are heard
in addressing their children’s specific needs.
- Initiate a method of follow-up from professional services for families
to monitor progress following services.
- Augment access to services by reducing barriers to affordable services
and medications for children with behavioral health disorders.
- Formalize a comprehensive family support system by creating a single
source for collaboration and coordination of family supports across
Nebraska. Currently there are many family support organizations that
work independently of one another, thus creating fragmentation in our
family supports. An organized family support network would ensure smooth
flow of services across geographical and provider boundaries,
eliminating travel restrictions for families.
- Compensate families for participation in advisory committees to reduce
the financial difficulties for taking time off work, for childcare, and
- Devise a method to assist families to make application for SSI less
complicated and not restricted due to parent income.
- Utilize service coordinators as family advocates to support and
collaborate with the schools.
- Train school personnel on behavioral health disorders and effective
- Increase the availability of Wraparound services across the state.
- Organize support groups for parents, and siblings living with
- Enhance professional partners to include service coordinator roles and
functions and coordination with schools to standardize behavioral
- Train law enforcement officers on crisis intervention training. NAMI
has a 1-week model used to assist officers to recognize and deescalate
- Continue with the implementation of Family Centered Care practices for
Protection & Safety and HHSS Caseworkers.
- Records for children and youth need to follow them to services.
- Provide Integrated Coordination Care Units in each Behavioral Health
- Because every encounter is cross-cultural develop partnerships with
our families maintaining cultural humility to better understand the
historical, familial, community, occupational, and environmental
- Initiate training on cultural beliefs and practices for professionals
serving families to increase minority-friendly services that enhance
inclusion and culturally based interventions.
- Ensure culturally sensitive and competent practices for interventions
that can be individualized and applied in a family-centered fashion.
- Include the importance of confidentiality in awareness training for
professionals, para-professionals, education personnel, therapists, and
- Address issues of bullying in school settings.
- Continue to support youth groups such as the YES Group.
- Provide education to youth on medications used in treating mental
- Provide training for educators regarding mental health symptoms
including medication for symptoms, and positive methods to interact with
youth experiencing difficulty.
- Update treatment materials for youth hospitalized for behavioral
- Initiate support groups for parents and siblings of youth with
behavioral health disorders.
"A supportive resource and compassionate voice for lives touched by mental illness
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