President Biden Delivers Second State of the Union Address

On February 7, President Biden delivered his second State of the Union Address to the 118th U.S. Congress. In his address, President Biden emphasized the importance of making higher education more affordable by reducing student debt and increasing Pell Grants for working- and middle-class families, as well as tackling the mental health crisis.

A fact sheet on the State of the Union address mentioned improving school-based mental health by increasing the number of mental health care professionals in high-need districts and strengthening the school-based mental health profession pipeline. This would be accomplished by increasing funding to recruit future mental health professionals from Historically Black Colleges and Universities and to expand the Minority Fellowship Program. The Minority Fellowship Program, administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, aims to reduce health disparities, and improve behavioral health care outcomes for racial and ethnic populations by growing the number of racial and ethnic minorities in the nation’s behavioral health workforce. The fact sheet also prioritizes mental health research. The Office of Science and Technology Policy and Domestic Policy Council recently released the White House Report on Mental Health Research Priorities, which identifies key areas where additional scientific research is needed to address our national mental health crisis. Some priority research areas in the report include advancing equity in promoting mental health, supporting, and expanding the mental health workforce, and integrating substance use disorder and mental health research and treatment.

You can read the transcript of President Biden’s speech here. The fact sheet on President Biden’s remarks during the address can be found here.