(110 ILCS 58/10)
The General Assembly finds all of the following:
(1) Mental health is a pressing and growing issue on
college campuses across this State and the country. A recent national survey found that one in 4 college students are treated for or diagnosed with a mental health condition and one in 5 has considered suicide.
(2) About 75% of all mental health conditions start
by age 24, with higher rates of diagnosed disorders in college-aged students. College counseling center directors believe mental health conditions among students on their campuses are increasing, signaling a growing issue that must be addressed.
(3) Students who come from low-income households are
more likely to have a mental health condition.
(4) Between 2007 and 2017, the diagnosis rate of
college students increased from 22% to 36%, indicating a higher need for services. Treatment rates over the same period increased by 15%.
(5) Young adults are less likely to receive mental
health support than any other age group. College campuses can play a big role in addressing this challenge. Over 70% of Illinois high school graduates enroll in a postsecondary program shortly after graduation.
(6) College-aged students are more accepting of
mental health services than the general population, but most struggle accessing them. An overwhelming 96% of college students reported they would provide support to peers whom they knew were thinking about suicide.
(7) Many students lack knowledge of mental health
signs and symptoms and do not know how to help or where to refer their friends for services.
(8) Services offered by most college campuses are
limited in scope and capacity, with 67% of campus counseling center directors saying that their campus psychiatric service capacity is inadequate or does not meet student demand.
(9) Combined with a dearth of available services, the
vast majority of students do not seek out services, and many students who complete a suicide never received on-campus services. Paying for community-based services is an issue for about half of students. Combining insufficient on-campus services with unaffordable community resources leaves students on their own.
(Source: P.A. 101-251, eff. 7-1-20