FCC approves 3-digital suicide prevention phone line launching in 2022
To offer those experiencing crises faster and easier access to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, the Federal Communications Commission unanimously voted on Thursday to dedicate the three-digital number 988 to the hotline.
Instead of having to remember or look up a ten-digit 1-800 number in order to call the support center, it will be as simple as calling 911 or any of the other short-code numbers.
Regarding the matter, FCC chairman Ajit Pai stated, “My hope is that by establishing a government-backed 988 suicide and mental health three-digit dialing code, on par with the 911 dialing code all Americans know for emergencies, we will send a powerful signal that there is nothing shameful about seeking help in times of crisis. That it’s a sign of strength, not one of weakness. We will let people know that they are not alone.”
Ajit also said that the FCC is considering offering a texting service in the future, as today’s youth are more attuned to that medium of communication rather than vocal phone calls.
The organization offers support to callers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
By July 16, 2022, Americans will be able to get in touch with the national hotline by dialing just 988. The currently existing ten-digit number will continue to be active as well. NVG
The Philippine Department of Health has said that every case of suicide is a tragedy that can be avoided. Thus, people who feel that they may be suffering from mental health problems and need help may call Hopeline hotlines:
- 804-HOPE (4673)
- 0917-558-HOPE (4673), or
- 2919 (toll-free number for Globe and TM subscribers)
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