SILVER SPRING TOWNSHIP, CUMBERLAND COUNTY, Pa. - Attorney General Josh Shapiro spoke with students in the Cumberland Valley School District about the Safe2Say Something program. The youth violence prevention program launched last school year, and has fielded over 28,000 tips.
In the second year of the Safe2Say Something program, Shapiro, along with lawmakers are looking at the tips being sent int.
"Ninety percent of the tips we received are not about a specific threat to a school or a threat of violence to some other person," said Shapiro. "It actually has a lot to do with the mental health of these students."
Shapiro making a stop Wednesday to speak with Cumberland Valley students about their concerns and needs.
"Students are struggling with stress, they're struggling with mental health issues," said Shapiro. "They need more resources of people to be able to talk to and I think the tips demonstrate that need today."
In the Cumberland Valley School District, each year students are taught or reminded about the Safe2Say Something program. The district has critical incident responders who deal with the more serious tips that come in. Other less critical tips get filtered down to someone like a school principal to deal with the issue.
"I think the program now is working well," said Dr. David Christopher, Cumberland Valley School District Superintendent. "If you save one student, there's a high value to that obviously."
Shapiro commends the district, and other districts across the state are do, but he is pushing for state lawmakers to find funding to put a counselor in every single school building in Pennsylvania.
"If we make that investment based on the data we're getting from Safe2Say," said Shapiro. "Than we're going to have healthy school environments, safer school environments."
State lawmakers in attendance of the discussion say they will take back the feedback to the State Capitol and use it to draft up legislation to help students.