Wyoming's Safe2Tell program has received over 1,500 tips from students since its implementation two years ago.
Students can confidentially report dangerous situations from mental health issues to threats of violence through a phone line and an app. Those tips are referred to school staff and law enforcement who respond locally.
Safe2Tell is a program of the Division of Victims Services within the Wyoming Attorney General's office. Bill Morse, the program manager, said the focus is on getting students the local support they need.
"We require schools and law enforcement to give us a disposition on every tip that we send out," said Morse. "So we can see whether it was one: a legitimate tip, and two: what action was taken. If it was someone who is having a mental health issue, were they referred to counseling or maybe were they taken to counseling?"
Morse said over the last two years 62 percent of tips have led to some kind of intervention, including preventing violence by taking weapons away. He said the goal is to keep kids alive and out of the criminal justice system.
The legislature's Joint Education Committee is moving school safety legislation forward that would require all schools to publicize Safe2Tell, and Morse said that would make a difference.
"We have some schools in some districts that have really gotten on board with this and do promotion pretty extensively within their schools," said Morse. "And we have others that haven't gotten fully on board or don't do a lot to promote it within their schools, and so I think this statute will help push that along a little bit."
Morse added that even when school is out over winter vacation, Safe2Tell Wyoming will be active 24/7 at www.safe2tellwy.org or by calling 1-844-WYO-SAFE (1-844-996-7233)