Last updated August 8, 2023
Our number one priority is to keep the teens in our program safe. Though our Mentors are not medical or licensed behavioral health personnel, we acknowledge the fact that crisis situations might arise between a teen and their Mentor. For this reason, we aim to clarify how our Mentors will behave in the event of a crisis situation to ensure that a teen in crisis is directed to the right resource at the right time. This document outlines our escalation policy and defines what a Mentor will do in the event of an escalation situation. We’ve defined our escalation policy into two different buckets as follows.
Level 1 Escalation: A Level 1 escalation occurs when there is an issue that arises that should be met by a clinical individual. However, there is no immediate threat or danger.
Level 2 Escalation: A Level 2 escalation occurs in the event of a crisis where there is an immediate threat to the physical health of a teenager or to someone else.
Level 1 Escalation
A level 1 escalation arises when a teenager needs clinical support, but is not an immediate danger to themselves or someone else. These could be issues of prolonged extreme emotion, concerns about non-threatening suicidal ideation, eating disorders, OCD, severe anxiety, or any other concern of a clinical mental disorder. The Mentor’s goal in a Level 1 escalation is to ensure that the teen safely seeks out a clinical resource and that the teen’s parents are informed.
A Mentor is trained to identify a Level 1 Crisis during training. Alongside their Supervisor, if a Mentor identifies an issue that requires clinical support but is not an immediate threat to the teen, they will initiate the following procedure.Assess the situation for safety and, if needed, escalate the issue to a Level 2.
If no immediate threat is identified, Mentors will gather information about the concern and contact their Supervisor. If the supervisor agrees that a clinical issue is potentially present, Mentors will let the teen know that they are not a clinical resource and that the next step is to contact the teen’s parents. Parents will be contacted within 3-business days.
“I am a non-clinical resource and I think that you would be much better served by a clinical resource. Our team can help find someone who can help you with this. We have to loop in your parents because I really want to make sure you get the help you need. I’m happy to help facilitate the conversation with your parents over a phone call if that would help.”
A Crisis Report will be completed by the Supervisor and the Mentor.We allow teens up to 3 days from the incident report to talk with their Mentor about how to communicate the concern that they are facing before alerting their parents of the issue. The Supervisor will alert the parent of the concern as soon as the teen consents or, at latest, on the 3rd day after the escalation.Once the parents are looped in, the teen, Mentor, Supervisor, and Parent will work together to find the appropriate solution for the teen.
Level 2 Escalation
A level two escalation occurs in the event of a crisis where there is an immediate threat to the teenager or someone else. This can look like suicidal ideation with expressed means, active self-harm, an active desire to harm others or themselves, or a verbal declaration of child abuse or neglect (See 988’s imminent risk policy). The Mentor’s goal in a Level 2 escalation is to get the teen into the hands of a first responder or medical professional as quickly and safely as possible.
A Mentor identifies a Level 2 Crisis by asking direct questions relating to self harm, harm to others, and/or clearly identifies a situation that poses an immediate threat to the physical health of a teen. If the mentor identifies an immediate concern, they will initiate the following procedure.If the teen needs immediate physical help, a Mentor will use the crisis feature in our app to initiate a call to 911. An escalation to 911 will alert the Mentor’s Supervisor as well as the parents notifying them that 911 has been contacted.
If the teen is not in immediate physical danger but is verbal about suicide or any other severe mental health concern, a Mentor will use the crisis feature in our app to initiate a call to 988. An escalation to 988 will alert the Mentor’s Supervisor as well as the parents notifying them that 988 has been contacted.The Mentor’s supervisor will communicate with both the Mentor and the Parent once contact has been made after the escalation. The Mentor will continue to talk with the teen until help is on the way or the situation has been diffused. A Crisis Report will be completed by the Supervisor and the Mentor.
At Somethings, the mental health and well-being of the teens who apply to our program is our number one priority. To ensure the safety of your teen, we ask teens to complete the Columbia Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS) during their application. The Columbia Suicide Severity Rating Scale (C-SSRS) is a clinically validated self-assessment designed to identify and assess suicide risk in individuals. By utilizing this scale, we aim to identify any signs of suicidal thoughts or behaviors in the teens seeking to join our program and ensure that your teen is receiving the right level of support.
If a teen has ever made a suicide attempt or if a teen responds affirmatively (YES) to questions 3, 4, or 5 of the C-SSRS, indicating a detailed suicide plan, method, or means, we will prioritize their safety by providing immediate resources and connecting them with our partners for more intensive care that mentorship can not provide. For teens who respond YES to questions 1 or 2, reflecting some level of suicidal ideation, our clinical team will review their application and, if necessary, refer them to external mental health resources.
The safety of your teen is our top priority, which includes a commitment to each teen's well-being as it extends beyond our program. Please contact us for any inquiries about our intake policy or screening process.