The current political and social climate is increasing the risk for young people’s health. Real and perceived discrimination leads to toxic stress and unhealthy behavior—from substance abuse to refusal to seek medical services. Young people who are immigrants or have other marginalized identities are particularly at risk in this moment.
We stand with all young people, especially those affected by the “Muslim ban” this past weekend. We applaud our home cities – the Bay Area, Boston, Chicago, New York City, and Los Angeles – for showing their active support for immigrants as sanctuary cities. We will do our part alongside our partners to empower young people with the knowledge, skills, and resources to make healthy decisions.
Please join us in standing strongly behind the mission of PHE. Make sure schools in your community are supporting all immigrant families right now with access to mental health services, adequate English-language learner programs, and other programs. Share resources with any immigrants you might know and learn more directly from immigrant youth. Urge your community organizations and faith-based institutions to be a loving presence to all. And support organizations, PHE and so many others, that are showing up for young people every day.