A new three-digit number – 9-8-8 – that launched last month nationwide will make it easier for people in the midst of a crisis or contemplating suicide to get help.
Trained crisis counselors are answering all calls made to 9-8-8. The Federal Communications Commission predicts that calls to the new three-digit number will double in the next year.
Advocates and health experts hope more people will use the new hotline – instead of calling 9-1-1, which only dispatches emergency assistance — frequently involving the police — instead of providing alternative and more helpful interventions.
Callers can continue to use the 1-800-273-8255 to get help.
If you or someone you know may be considering suicide, please seek help. Call or text 988 to reach the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline. If you live outside the U.S., visit findahelpline.com to find free, confidential support in your country.