Link to source article: https://www.aarp.org/health/conditions-treatments/info-2019/988-suicide-prevention-hotline/
There are many news articles and coverage of this but I just want to be sure people know that this is a work in progress behind the scenes.
“In response to a growing suicide epidemic across the U.S., the federal government has approved a new national three-digit number like 911 that will connect callers with lifesaving resources in times of mental crisis. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is requiring all phone service providers to direct all 988 calls to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline crisis center by July 16, 2022. The current number is a traditional length, 800-273-8255 (TALK).”
“When it comes to saving lives, time is of the essence, and we believe that 988 can be activated more quickly than other possible three-digit codes,” FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said. “In addition, 988 has an echo of the 911 number we all know as an emergency number.” “In a review of 550 suicidal individuals who reached out to the hotline, 95 percent of them reported that the call stopped them from killing themselves, Pai said.”
Once ‘988’ is active the 1-800-273-TALK number will still work also.
Think of the ‘988’ as a quick forwarding system when in a crisis and unable to think of the other hotline number. Both numbers will direct callers to the National Suicide Hotline which will be increasing staffing to keep up with the increase in demand from this easier number.
If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide you can:
call 1-800-273-8255(TALK) for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
text CONNECT to 741-741 for the National Crisis Text Line
call 1-866-488-7386 for the Trevor Project (LGBTQ+) or text START to 678-678
All the above operate 24/7. For a larger list of chat/text/talk crisis hotlines visit https://www.utahpridecenter.org/prevention/crisis-support-hotlines.