Colo. Attorney General, D-51 push Safe 2 Tell app

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT) -- Students can anonymously report social, safety and serious issues to adults using the Safe 2 Tell program.

The program has been around since the Columbine High School shooting, but the app is fairly new.

In light of recent student suicides and school threats, School District 51 held a meeting to get this resource into students' hands.

Reports show “suicide threat” reports have increased year after year. More than 1,000 reports have been made just this school year in the district.

Students face issues every day and bullying is just one.

"My nephew is subject to bullying on a daily basis,” said Stuart Chamovitz, an uncle of a middle school student. "It’s a dangerous situation, and it is vital that these kids are able to reach out in any way possible."

Reports can be made around the clock through the app, and students do not have to give out their names.

"Unfortunately there's a culture with teens, that if you report anything you are a snitch,” said Katie Garner, a counselor at Grand Junction High School. "This gives them that platform they can really use in order to make those report that they may not make otherwise.”

Attorney General Cynthia Coffman was at Monday night’s meeting at the Mesa County Work Force center to back the app. She said last year's tips on suicide exceeded any other category.

District 51 lost two students in just the last week.

"As long as we have suicides among our school kids we need to do more," Coffman said. "They know when their friends are suffering; they are our eyes and ears. It’s not snitching to share a concern, that's saving a life and that a heroic thing to do."

She believes the increase in bullying, depression and suicide is linked to social media.

The tips are immediately sent to school authorities and/or dispatch without social repercussions for the student.

“I don't think enough can be done. It's a high bar to set, but community outreach is the first step,” Chamovitz said.

There have been more than 27,000 reports across Colorado since the program started, and 6,000 of those have been made since August 2016.



 
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