FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mental Health America of Greater Dallas
Statement of Bonnie L. Cook, MAS, Executive Director of Mental Health America of Greater Dallas
DALLAS (May 8, 2023)— Mental Health America of Greater Dallas (MHA – Greater Dallas) joins in mourning the loss of those killed in the tragic shootings in Allen, Texas. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims’ families, and hope for the full recovery of the injured and everyone affected by this horrific event. Tragedies like this happen too often and continue to impact our communities and the nation at large and cause individuals to feel anxious and afraid. If you or someone you know is struggling or in crisis, help is available!
- Call or text 988, the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline: Available 24 hours, conversations are free and confidential.
- Text MHA to 741741 to reach the MHA National Crisis Text Line.
- Call 1-800-985-5990 or text “TalkWithUs” to 66746 to reach the SAMHSA Disaster Distress Helpline. Trained crisis workers will listen to you and direct you to the resources you need. · Visit MHA National/Coping to learn more about coping with disaster.
Additionally, MHA – Greater Dallas offers the following suggestions:
- Talk honestly about the incident, without graphic detail, and share your feelings about it.
- Encourage young people to talk about their concerns, express their feelings, and then validate them.
- Limit television viewing. It can be difficult to process the images and messages in news reports.
- Keep the dialogue going even after media coverage subsides; continue to talk about feelings and discuss actions to make our communities safer.
- Seek professional help when necessary.
Gun violence is affecting too many lives; we desperately need to enact sound state public policy that seriously addresses gun control and limits the number of available firearms in this country. Yet public policy that prevents gun violence in our communities is only a partial solution. An abundance of research provides us with the effects of gun violence on the social determinants of health. Let us all unite to create and sustain supportive mental health care environments in our communities.
About Mental Health America of Greater Dallas (MHA – Greater Dallas):
MHA – Greater Dallas, founded in 1947, proudly celebrates its 75th anniversary of community service. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, our mission is to promote mental wellness through community education and policy advocacy. MHA – Greater Dallas serves as a catalyst to identify, assess, and respond to mental health needs in the community. As a facilitator and coordinator for local mental health service providers, MHA-Greater Dallas operates through long-range strategic planning along with immediate responses to community crises as they arise. In addition to our efforts to supply information, education, and advocacy related to mental health issues, we also provide preventive programs designed to equip high-risk populations (including children, adolescents, the homeless, and the indigent) with information and skills to combat stress and adversity. Learn more: www.mhadallas.org.