By Anna Maria Basquez
(CBS4) – Colorado law enforcement officers and other responders shared words of support following the school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. On Tuesday, 19 students and two teachers were shot and killed.
Several Colorado agencies are also sending out tips to parents and to those struggling with mental health.
"Our hearts are in #Uvalde today," tweeted the Aurora Police Department, one of many agencies with the tragedy heavy on their hearts. "We understand the pain & want you to now we are here for you. Our SRO's (School Resource Officers) continue their dedication to our schools, staff & your children."
The Colorado State Patrol shared how to talk to children about school safety and how to best be helpful for children which might include less exposure of the traumatic events.
"The events in Uvalde, TX have brought out a range of emotions in us all," Colorado State Patrol tweeted. "We send all the love from our broken hearts to everyone involved."
The Colorado Department of Public Safety shared tips from the Colorado School Safety Resource Center.
- Listen. -Provide opportunity for & encourage children to express their concerns and fears. -Listen for misconceptions or inaccurate information, and share facts, as developmentally appropriate. -Validate a child's feelings and give extra reassurance, support & encouragement.
- Protect -Schools provide needed structure, stability, & predictability for children. We encourage children to go to school & return to normal routines as soon as they are able. - Monitor children's exposure to media coverage to protect them from secondary trauma.
- Connect - Check in with children on a regular basis. - Watch for children who may have individual or on‐going needs based on past trauma experiences or difficulty coping after a period of time. -Connect to mental health or counseling for follow up, as needed.
- Model - Demonstrate calm behavior and healthy coping skills. - Maintain level emotions and reactions to children, and help them achieve balance.
- Teach - Acknowledge the normal reactions to stress, trauma, and grief. - Those affected may have a variety of reactions such as difficulty-sleeping, up & down emotions, rigid thinking, regressive behavior, etc. Teach about healthy coping responses, as needed.
- Problem‐solve -Help children problem-solve how to go to school every day, how to stay in school, and how to do well. -Contact your child's school with individual or on‐going needs. The school can help you link with needed resources."
Denver Public Health & Environment also offered the following resources:
- Colorado Crisis Services: 844-493-8255/text TALK to 38255
- Safe 2 Tell: 877-542-7233
- National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 800-273-8255
- The Trevor Project: 866-488-7386/ text STAT to 678678
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