Page:United States Statutes at Large Volume 113 Part 3.djvu/653

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PROCLAMATION 7246—OCT. 30, 1999 113 STAT. 2171 reach the age of 18 without being adopted or placed in a permanent home. Under the current system, Federal financial assistance for young people in foster care ends just as they are making the critical transition to independence. We must ensure that when these yoimg people are old enough to leave the foster care system, they have the health care, life skills training, and educational opportunities they need to succeed personally and professionally. As we observe National Adoption Month this year, we can take pride in our progress, but we know there is more work to be done. Let us take this opportiuiity to rededicate ourselves to meeting those challenges, and let us honor the many adoptive piarents whose generosity and love have made such an extraordinary difference in the lives of thousands of our Nation's children. NOW, THEREFORE, I, WILLIAM J. CLINTON, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do heireby proclaim November 1999 as National Adoption Month. I urge all Americans to observe this month with appropriate programs and activities to honor adoptive families and to participate in efforts to find permanent, loving homes for waiting children. IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty- eighth day of October, in the year of oin* Lord nineteen hundred and ninety-nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and twenty-fourth. WILLIAM J. CLINTON Proclamation 7246 of October 30, 1999 Child Mental Health Month, 1999 By the President of the United States of America A Proclamation As a Nation, we have made much progress in ensuring the physical health of our yoxmg people. But we are only beginning to make similar strides in protecting their mental health. The symptoms of mental illness in children and adolescents too often go unrecognized and therefore untreated—a tragic failing that can lead to profound effects on their development. Even very young children, can experience anxiety and depressive disorders that can have a long-term negative impact on their social interactions at home and at school. Unfortunately, our attitudes regarding mental illness have compounded this problem. While we now know that more than one in five Americans experiences some form of mental illness each year, that many mental disorders are biological, and that they can be treated medically, too many people still believe that mental illness is a personal failure. Because of this widespread misconception, many parents are reluctant to acknowledge that their children need help, and many children who need help are afi:aid to ask for it. During Child Mental Health Month, I encoiurage all parents, teachers, pediatricians, school nurses, other health care professionals, and con-