This was written by Julia Henderson and Kari Traylor, Moms Clean Air Force summer interns:
We chose to work with Moms because of its people-centered approach to environmental advocacy and focus on environmental justice in the fight against the climate crisis and pollution.
We understand how the daunting nature of the climate crisis can take an immense toll on the mental health of young people like us. House Resolution 975 (H. Res. 975) offers an important step in the fight for increasing awareness and advancing future policy around climate and mental health.
Madigan Traversi and Giselle Perez, California high school students and leaders for Schools for Climate Action, wrote H. Res. 975 to advocate for necessary change. The resolution advocates for more funding toward youth-centered mental health resources and incorporation of mental health considerations into climate education, resilience, and adaptation efforts.
In a 2021 study published in The Lancet, 45% of youth respondents reported that thoughts about climate change have a negative impact on their daily lives. The stress and trauma of being a young person in today’s changing climate — from intensifying natural disasters to increased interruptions in school by things like extreme heat — can seriously damage youth mental health, and the effects of this damage may linger into adulthood.
More than 35 members of Congress have signed on as co-sponsors of H. Res. 975, and more than 80 organizations focused on climate, youth, and mental health have endorsed the resolution. Now, let’s build on the momentum to help the many young people whose mental health is adversely affected by climate change.