Cops send advisory to Bengaluru colleges, varsities

The institutions must organise regular mental health awareness campaigns on their campuses.
Image used for representative purposes only
Image used for representative purposes onlyFile photo

BENGALURU: With the number of suicide cases on the campuses of colleges and universities increasing, the city police have sent an advisory to all educational institutions in south-east division.

Stressing the need for implementing safety measures and establishing support systems, CK Baba, deputy commissioner of police, south-east division, said the advisory focuses on measures to make the campuses student-friendly by providing access to mental health professionals and training to faculty members to effectively address the problems faced by students. A helpline number will also be provided to help the students in distress.

The advisory highlighted the student-counsellor ratio of 5:1 and emphasised regular mental health screenings and immediate assistance to students in distress. It outlined the establishment of 24/7 helpline and crisis intervention services apart from programmes on mental health and recognising signs of distress or suicidal tendencies among students.

The advisory proposed to develop peer support networks facilitated by trained student volunteers, aimed at offering peer-to-peer support and guiding peers. The advisory stated that institutions must prioritise student well-being through comprehensive initiatives such as stress management and workshops on time management, study skills, and healthy lifestyles. They should offer inclusive and culturally sensitive counselling services in multiple languages and tailored assistance for minority and international students.

The institutions must organise regular mental health awareness campaigns on their campuses. They should use posters and social media to reach the students in distress. They should also involve parents and communities in such events. The advisory stressed the need for organising events such as yoga, exercise, outdoor games, and extracurricular activities on the campuses.

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