Utah Gov. Spencer J. Cox hosted a Social Media and Youth Mental Health Symposium Tuesday. Experts and legislators discussed recent research and the mental health challenges Utah youth currently face.
Gov. Cox and University of Virginia sociology professor Brad Wilcox, a leading voice on family structure, civil society and culture influence, discussed the direct impacts social media is having on youth well-being.
“Our administration is very concerned about how social media is affecting our children,” said Gov. Cox. “Today’s symposium brought to light risks, but also how parents can better guide their children and what role government should play in social media safety. Our kids are the future of our state and we need to do everything we can to protect them.”
“Social media is harming our children and it’s exciting to see the great work being done in this space here in Utah,” said University of Virginia Professor Brad Wilcox. “I applaud Gov. Cox for his leadership on this important issue.”
Other panel discussions throughout the day featured First Lady Abby Cox; Dr. Michelle Hofmann, Utah Department of Health and Human Services; Ben Horsley, Granite School District; Dr. Aaron Fischer, Huntsman Mental Health Institute; Amanda Choudhary, Primary Children’s Hospital and Intermountain Healthcare; Jessica Holzbauer, Huntsman Mental Health Institute; and Ben Lomond High School student Zander Piper. In addition, Sen. Kirk Cullimore, Sen. Mike McKell and Rep. Jordan Teuscher all participated in panel discussions.
Topics included potential legislation and policymaking opportunities to protect youth, public health trends and concerns for Utah teens, and how parents and youth can navigate social media safely.
The day’s events can all be viewed on the governor’s YouTube channel.