988: New mental health crisis hotline

988 will become available nationwide for those seeking help during a mental health crisis.
Published: Jul. 7, 2022 at 3:56 PM CDT
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(KALB) - 988 will become available nationwide, beginning July 16, for those seeking help during a mental health crisis.

The Suicide and Crisis Lifeline, previously the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, is changing from a ten-digit dial code to only three.

“Everyone knows that if we’re in trouble we call 911 real fast and so, I think dialing 988 real fast in that kind of crisis will be a lot easier,” said Angela Dixon, Co-founder of Save Cenla, a non-profit organization that works to promote mental health awareness and suicide prevention.

Dixon said they hope to see an increase in people utilizing the hotline with the change to a shorter dialing code, and the hotline is something that the organization highly encourages.

Save Cenla also offers something called the ‘ASIST’ program (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training), which teaches people how to recognize when someone may be thinking about suicide and how to get them help. The hotline is something that program participants are taught to encourage people to use since it is always available.

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