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WPBS Hosts Hiding in Plain Sight – Youth Mental Illness Screening and Panel Discussion

WATERTOWN, NY; June 16, 2022 – Across our nation, staggering numbers of children, adolescents, and young adults are struggling with feelings of helplessness, depression, and suicidal ideation – a development that began long before the pandemic but was worsened by it. COVID limited or removed access to in-person schooling, in-person social opportunities with peers and mentors, access to health care and social services. Our collective future very much depends on identifying and implementing effective responses to this enormous challenge.

The latest documentary film from Ken Burns’ Florentine Films, Hiding in Plain Sight – Youth Mental Illness investigates this troubling situation through the eyes of a varied group of young people. In advance of the national broadcast of this film, WPBS-TV and the St. Lawrence County Youth Bureau have partnered to host a community screening and panel discussion on Tuesday, June 21st at 7:00 pm, at Heuvelton Central School Auditorium.

Excerpts from the film will be followed by a facilitated discussion and Q&A with panelists including Katelyn Jessmer (SLC Mental Health Services), Rosemarie Maneri (Parent Advocate), Cole Siebels (SLC Youth Bureau Teen Ambassador) and Johannes Richter (SLC Youth Bureau Teen Ambassador).

Members of the public are welcome and admission is free. For further information please call the SLC Youth Bureau at 315-379-9464 or email

Hiding in Plain Sight: Youth Mental Illness premieres on WPBS-TV on Monday, June 27th and Tuesday, June 28th at 9:00 pm.


About WPBS
WPBS is a PBS station serving approximately 650,000 households throughout Northern New York and Eastern Ontario via cable, satellite, Internet and over-the-air distribution. WPBS is a non-profit organization whose mission is to educate, inform, and engage its two-nation region with exceptional and trusted content across multiple platforms. Its vision is to be the premier provider of extraordinary public media that instills wonder and curiosity across generations and borders. More information about WPBS, including a full channel listing, is available at, or by following WPBS on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

About St. Lawrence Co. Youth Bureau
Since 1945, the State Youth Commission of New York has been providing technical and financial support to youth programs in communities throughout the state. The intent was to provide services for the personal development of youth and to prevent, detect and treat delinquency. Over the years this program evolved into the St. Lawrence County Youth Bureau which has been a County Department since 1978. Today the mission of the St. Lawrence County Youth Bureau is very similar to what it was in 1945 with the goal of ensuring that children, adolescents, and young adults have access to programs that will help them to be contributing members of society. This department is dedicated to preventing delinquency through positive youth development and the implementation of comprehensive youth services to all youth in St. Lawrence County. More information about the St. Lawrence County Youth Bureau is available at, or by following them on Facebook and Instagram.

The documentary HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT: YOUTH MENTAL ILLNESS is a central part of Well Beings, the multi-year, multiplatform health campaign including other feature-length documentaries, short-form original digital content, user-generated storytelling, a digital and social media campaign, community events, and educational curriculum created by WETA with support from a broad coalition of national and local partners. The public can join the conversation on youth mental health by using #PlainSightPBS and #WellBeings, visiting, or following @WellBeingsOrg on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT: YOUTH MENTAL ILLNESS will be available for streaming concurrent with broadcast on all station-branded PBS platforms, including and the PBS Video app, available on iOS, Android, Roku streaming devices, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Samsung Smart TV, Chromecast and VIZIO. PBS station members can view many series, documentaries and specials via PBS Passport. For more information about PBS Passport, visit the PBS Passport FAQ website.

KEN BURNS PRESENTS HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT: YOUTH MENTAL ILLNESS A FILM BY ERIK EWERS AND CHRISTOPHER LOREN EWERS is a production of Florentine Films, Ewers Brothers Productions, and WETA Washington, D.C. Directed by Erik Ewers and Christopher Loren Ewers. Written by David Blistein. Produced by Julie Coffman. Co-produced by Susan Shumaker, Erik Ewers, Christopher Loren Ewers, and David Blistein. Executive produced by Ken Burns. Executive producers for WETA are John F. Wilson and Tom Chiodo. WETA project management by Kate Kelly. WETA production management by Jim Corbley. 

The Well Beings Youth Mental Health Project, which includes HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT: YOUTH MENTAL ILLNESS, is made possible by Otsuka, Kaiser Permanente, Bank of America, Liberty Mutual Insurance, American Psychiatric Association Foundation, One Mind, Movember, National Alliance on Mental Illness, Dana Foundation, Dauten Family Foundation, The Hersh Foundation, Mental Health Services Oversight & Accountability Commission, John & Frances Von Schlegell, Sutter Health, Robina Riccitiello, and Jackson Family Enterprises. Partners include CALL TO MIND at American Public Media, PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs, WE Organization, Forbes, PEOPLE, Mental Health America, National Council for Mental Wellbeing, The Steve Fund, The Jed Foundation and Athletes for Hope.