CBS Stations Debuts ‘Kids in Crisis’ Special Report This Week

Kids in Crisis on CBS Stations
(Image credit: CBS Stations)

CBS-owned stations are taking on mental health in young people in the week-long series of reports titled “Kids in Crisis.” The stories begin on the 14 CBS-owned stations Monday, February 27. The group is calling the initiative “the most comprehensive and collaborative series of solutions-oriented reports on a single topic” in the history of the station group. 

“As someone who has the privilege of leading CBS Stations and, even more importantly, as a parent, I am extremely proud of the work our teams at every station and the CBS Local News Innovation Lab have done and will continue to do to shine a light on the issues surrounding this crisis, and also present solutions that will make a real difference in the lives of children and their families,” said Wendy McMahon, president and co-head, CBS News and Stations. 

The CBS stations include KCBS Los Angeles, WCBS New York and WBBM Chicago. 

“This project reflects the first time that the executive producers of community impact in each of our newsrooms have come together and collaborated on reports that not only will super serve each local market, but also be extremely relevant for audiences in other cities across the country,” said Adrienne Roark, CBS Stations president. “Our audiences will be able to view reports from each local station’s news team as well as from other CBS Stations across the country.”

According to Mental Health America, more than 60% of youth with major depression do not receive any mental health treatment, CBS Stations said, and approximately 80% of states across the country have a severe shortage of child psychiatrists. 

In addition to the reports produced by stations, the CBS Local News Innovation Lab will present three special reports for the group. The reporting will also be featured on CBS Mornings, CBS News streaming and 

Everyone at the Innovation Lab and across our station group wants to help spark national and local conversations about the issues and potential solutions surrounding mental health,” said Chad Cross, VP, content development, CBS Stations. “We’ve done a lot of listening to what kids and teens across the country have to say about the current state of their well-being. As a result, the reports being produced by our teams in support of ‘Kids In Crisis’ represent the most important and, hopefully, the most impactful work we’ve done since launching the Innovation Lab last year.”

On February 27, CBS Stations consumer correspondent Ash-har Quraishi will report on the impact of mental health misinformation on TikTok and reveal how the platform’s algorithm can lead to the most vulnerable young users making faulty self-diagnoses. 

February 28, CBS Stations national investigative correspondent Stephen Stock will report on the shortage of mental health professionals. 

The project will also see CBS Stations environmental correspondent David Schechter report on the results of research on what the group calls “climate change anxiety.” 

The one-hour documentary Connecting the Dots, focused on youth mental health, debuts on CBS Stations’ 14 local news streaming channels March 1. Noemi Weiss directed.  

“Noemi’s work stands out as a first-of-its-kind documentary that goes beyond just talking to experts and provides an opportunity for audiences to hear directly from young people who wish to have their voices heard,” Roark said. 

Following the initial streaming presentation of Connecting the Dots, the documentary will be available for on-demand viewing on dedicated “Kids in Crisis” landing pages on each CBS Stations website. ■

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.