Chicago Tribune | Commentary: Chicago Forward — For teens, isolation during the pandemic can trigger mental health issues


APR 10, 2020 | 3:17 PM

The invisible effects of our current coronavirus lockdown — anxiety, fear, isolation — have created an America in crisis. A Kaiser Family Foundation survey in early April found that 45% of adults said COVID-19 has negatively impacted their mental health. Another recent national survey of 3,300 young people, conducted by, found that 89% of respondents said they are concerned about the coronavirus outbreak, with 34% very concerned. When asked how they feel about COVID-19, 54% are frustrated; 49.3% are nervous; 40% disconnected; 33% sad; 27.9% hopeful; 14% angry; and only 12.1% indifferent.

These statistics present the tip of an iceberg of angst young people are feeling as they endure the constriction of their freedom and the stark realities of social distancing. And for youths of color, whose levels of anxiety and stress are often intolerably high already, the assault on their mental health is even more devastating.

Communities United, a Chicago grassroots organization, partners with the National Association of Social Workers-Illinois and other mental health providers. Read the full story.