(AUSTIN, Texas) – Texas Governor Greg Abbott announced he will provide a $1.25 million grant to the Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District to counsel students and faculty affected by the mass shooting. at Robb Elementary School.
“As the Uvalde community continues to heal, Texas continues to work to help improve safety and aid recovery among students and educators,” Abbott said in a press release.
The money will be used for community outreach, crisis intervention and trauma-informed counseling through the governor’s Office of Public Safety, according to the release.
“This new source of funding will provide essential support to students, staff and faculty at Uvalde as they continue to process the trauma of that day and mourn the innocent lives lost,” Abbott said.
The funding comes more than two months after 19 students and two teachers were shot dead by a gunman in Uvalde, Texas at Robb Elementary. Immediately after the incident, Abbott blamed the massacre on mental health issues in response to critics who criticized the state’s gun policy.
Texas is currently ranked as the worst state in the nation for access to mental care, according to Mental Health America’s 2022 report.
A month before the school shooting, Abbott said $500 million from various state government agencies would fund Operation Lone Star, a Texas-Mexico border security initiative by the Department of Texas Public Safety and the Texas Military Department.
About $210.7 million came from Texas Health & Human Services, which oversees public mental health programs.
The governor’s press secretary, Renae Eze, dismissed the claim, telling ABC News in May that Abbott had not cut any funding for mental health services.
Abbott’s office is touting a $5 million investment to create a long-term family resilience center in Uvalde County, which provides access to mental health services for those affected by the shooting, in as part of its commitment to supporting the community.
ABC News’ Mary Kekatos contributed to this report.
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