Have you heard of PA's Mental Health Consent Law?
It is a law from 2004 that was created to give children ages 14-17 the ability to access mental health services without having to get their parents consent. Unfortunately the law has been misinterpreted to mean that children 14-17 also have the ability to opt-out of services even if their parents do consent. This is not at all how the law is to be interpreted.
The very first thing we did as an organization was create an easy to read document that explained how the law works. This obvosuly struck a chord with many people as it has been shared over 15,000 times across the state of Pennsylvania.
Sadly, the law continued to be misinterpreted by providers and it puts children and families in danger by being yet another hoop to jump through when accessing much needed mental health services. Thankfully representatives from across the state recognized the need to clarifiy this important law to clear up any confusion. Now 2020 Act 65 is the clarified version of the law that will hopefully be utlizied in the correct way going forward.
Below is a quote from cosponsor of 2020 Act 65; Rep. Jason Ortitay, the newly updated version of our easy to read document (also available in Spanish, and our newsest blog that dives deeper into the topic and it's impact.