Keepers were given the opportunity to meet and personally thank the state-elected officials for the recently approved Jared’s Law legislation.
The law is named after former HHS student Jared Martin, who died in 2014. He was 17 and a rising senior at the time.
The law requires schools to train all employees on suicide prevention, intervention and postvention. It also requires all schools in the state of Tennessee to create a policy to be adhered to for the same.
The law adds no additional financial burden to school districts, and that allowed it to pass overwhelmingly, with only three votes in opposition, in both House of Representatives and State Senate.
The Keepers were met by State Senator Kerry Roberts, who hosted them, personally gave them a tour of the Capitol and shared significant history of the building and its fixtures.
The Keepers then had the opportunity to visit with and get a photo with Gov. Bill Haslam. They also visited with and had photos taken with Lt. Gov. Randy McNally, Speaker of the House Beth Harwell and State Representatives Michael Curcio and Mary Littleton.
After lunch, the students broke into groups and went to each office and introduced themselves and thanked the elected officials for their support.
Several students were rewarded with Tennessee Blue Books and gained a better knowledge and understanding for the state government.
“I was honored to be able to attend with the students this year. The professionalism they displayed is an example many adults should learn from,” said Deb Martin, Jared’s mother and founder/president of the Jared’s Keepers Foundation.
The work these students have done in the last two school years has not gone unnoticed. A similar bill has been introduced in Illinois.