Kansas Mental
Health Coalition

988 Crisis Hotline Legislation Passed!

The Kansas Mental Health Coalition is celebrating the passage of 988 Behavioral Health Crisis legislation!  This is a crucial element of modernizing the Kansas Behavioral Health Continuum, providing meaningful suicide prevention and crisis assistance to Kansas families by assuring their calls are answered in Kansas by trained staff and covering some initial crisis interventions.  The Governor signed the bill June 2.  

Substitute for Senate Bill 19 was one of the last bills passed by the 2022 Legislature.  The House of Representatives voted 112-6 to pass the bill April 28, but the Senate did not take up the conference committee report until Sine Die - the procedural last day of the session, which was May 23.  The Senate voted 25-2 to pass the legislation, but there were nine Republican senators who "passed".  We expect the 988 hotline to be a topic for further consideration and possible changes next session.  Senate Ways and Means Chair Rick Billinger stated he would like to see how 988 could be merged or combined more closely with the 911 system.

The 988 legislation was held in the House for nearly two legislative sessions in an attempt to work out differences with legislators who opposed the proposed funding from phone fees (the fees were removed) and concerns with the structure.  Unfortunately, this meant the Senate did not have any time to vet the legislation through the standard committee process and there are numerous senators who are concerned the legislation contains too much bureaucracy and is duplicative of the current 911 system.  There was also concern about the fiscal note - Sub for SB 19 includes $10 million state funding, but the original legislation would have created more funding through phone fees in order to fund the call centers and crisis response services.  

Upcoming events

December 14, 2022 9:30 AM • Zoom link sent after RSVP
December 14, 2022 11:40 AM • Zoom link
March 07, 2023 9:01 AM • Kansas State Capitol, 300 SW 10th, Topeka, KS

(c) Kansas Mental Health Coalition, P.O. Box 4744, Topeka, KS  66604  785-969-1617

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