Phone calls to Colorado’s Safe2Tell program, which allows young people to anonymously make reports about the safety of other students or themselves decreased by 4% in May compared to April of 2022, prompting the director of the program to encourage youth to use the program in the months ahead.
“Reports to Safe2Tell typically decline when Colorado youth are no longer in their school buildings, but this month’s report examples demonstrate that we all need to look out for each other,” Safe2Tell Director Stacey Jenkins said in a news release. “Student harm and neglect can sometimes be caught by others who know the signs, and Safe2Tell is available for urgent safety reports 24-hours a day, throughout the year.”
The examples Jenkins refers to in the release include:
- A student reported that another student was being neglected by their parents, Safe2Tell informed local authorities and the Department of Human Services are investigating.
- A student reported another student for self-harming. Safe2Tell alerted local authorities a welfare check was conducted on the student. They were then connected with a therapist.
The top three categories of reports in May were for suicide threats, bullying, and drug use. In May, there have been 1,839 reports made with 205 of them being suicide threats, 142 bullying reports, and 129 drug reports.
During the school year, only 2.1% out of the 18,565 reports, were determined to be false, contained untrue information, or were made for the sole purpose of causing harm or bullying another person. During the 2021-2022 school year, Safe2Tell received 18,565 reports, 2,489 were suicide threats, 1,400 bullying reports, and 1,125 drug reports.
There have been other misuses for the program. For example, a parent called Safe2Tell about a concern for their child’s safety while at school. This parent was encouraged to call the school directly or even the school district. Safe2Tell is not an emergency response unit, nor is it a mental health service. Its purpose is to provide a way to anonymously make reports for students without having to contact law enforcement or school officials themselves.
The Safe2Tell call line is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. To make a report, you can call 1-877-542-7233, use its website, or mobile app, which can be found on both the Apple App Store and Google Play.
To learn more about the signs of child abuse or child neglect go to Colorado Child Abuse and Neglect hotline.