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Assemblymember Bauer-Kahan Heralds First Meeting of CalHHS 988-Crisis Policy Advisory Group

For immediate release:

[Sacramento, CA,] — Assemblymember Bauer-Kahan, author of  landmark mental health billAB 988, celebrates the inaugural meeting of the California Health and Human Services Agency (CalHHS) 988-Crisis Policy Advisory Group.

"I'm thrilled to see this effort taking shape as we address California's mental health crisis,” said Assemblymember Bauer-Kahan (D-Orinda) “AB 988 laid the groundwork for a more responsive behavioral health safety net, and this Advisory Group is a crucial first step in turning that vision into reality."

988 is the national Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Crisis hotline, an alternative to police response for those in mental health crisis. AB 988 established California’s process for implementing 988, which will begin with the work of CalHHS and this Advisory Group.

The Advisory Group was established by AB 988 to provide recommendations to the state on the implementation of 988 and the integration between the 911 and 988 systems. With California's 988 hotline receiving over 280,000 calls, there is urgency for action. The implementation efforts of a 988 emergency mental health hotline reflects California’s recognition of the integral role of mental health in overall healthcare. The Advisory Group's formation represents a move towards an equitable, accessible, and responsive behavioral health system.

“AB 988 is named in memory of Miles Hall, reflecting our commitment to provide California with healthcare response to a mental health crisis. This will save lives.” said Assemblymember Bauer-Kahan. “The Advisory Group marks a turning point in this process. Now the real work begins.”