1 min read

Season 5, Episode 109

BCBSA taking on youth mental health crisis with trauma-informed care

nlo 2


Guest Name:

Merrilee Logue | Dr. Razia Hashmi

Guest Website:

National Labor Office 

Blue Cross Blue Shield Association 

Guest Social Media:





Supportive Documents:

Merrilee Logue, Executive Director of the Blue Cross Blue Shield National Labor Office (NLO), and Dr. Razia Hashmi, Vice President of Clinical Affairs with the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (BCBSA), joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to continue our coverage of Mental Health Awareness Month. They discussed how a partnership with the Boys & Girls Club of America is using a different approach to address the youth mental health crisis in hopes of improving the future of American workers' mental health.

One in five Americans suffer from a mental health disease, or nearly 20 percent of all working people, but this often begins at a younger age. Most families struggle with accessing quality mental health for their children and themselves. Logue discussed some of the statistics behind mental health care for children, and how treating mental health at a younger age could improve the future of mental health in America. With mental health concerns becoming more prominent and a decline in the stigma around discussing mental health, awareness is increasing, Dr. Hashmi added.

To assist with the growing awareness, Dr. Hashmi discussed what a trauma-informed care approach is and what it means for treating mental health at a younger age. She explained the approach addresses the traumatic events that can occur as a child and leave a lasting impact through adulthood. Starting this method during childhood could help the nearly 34 million children under 18 who have faced adverse childhood experiences that lead to mental health issues. Dr. Hashmi discussed the long-term well-being of an individual suffering from early childhood adversity and its relation to illnesses.

Dr. Hashmi then discussed what trauma-informed principles are helping raise awareness and guide Americans to healthier communities and more effective preventative strategies. Logue discussed how the trauma-informed approach has led to a partnership between the Boys and Girls Club of America. Together, the BCBSA and Boys and Girls Club will attempt to provide training club staff members to assist with the emotional well-being of more than 3 million children across the country. By dedicating $10 million in funding to the program, BCBSA and the NLO are hoping to address the youth mental health crisis and improve the future of the American working population.

For more on the trauma-informed practices discussed by Logue and Dr. Hashmi, listen to the show above.

America’s Work Force is the only daily labor podcast in the US and has been on the air since 1993, supplying listeners with useful, relevant input into their daily lives through fact-finding features, in-depth interviews, informative news segments and practical consumer reports. America’s Work Force is committed to providing an accessible venue in which America's workers and their families can hear discussion on important, relevant topics such as employment, healthcare, legislative action, labor-management relations, corporate practices, finances, local and national politics, consumer reports and labor issues.

America’s Work Force Union Podcast is brought to you in part by our sponsors: AFL-CIO, American Federation of Government Employees, American Federation of Musicians Local 4, American Alliance for Manufacturing, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Columbus/Central Ohio Building and Construction Trades Council, Communication Workers of America, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers, International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Local 50, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, International Federation of Professional and Technical Engineers, International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Crafts, International Union of Painters and Allied Trades District Council 6, Ironworkers Great Lakes District Council, The Labor Citizen newspaper, Laborers International Union of The National Labor Office of Blue Cross and Blue Shield, North America, North Coast Area Labor Federation, Ohio Federation of Teachers, Survey and Ballot Systems, United Labor Agency, United Steelworkers.


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