Suicide takes the lives of over 48,300 Americans every year. Traumatic experiences, unemployment, and social isolation are among the top 10 causes. As the COVID19 pandemic wears on, the likelihood of someone you know affected by one or more of these conditions has dramatically increased. Many have been pushed past their breaking points.
Suicide.org offers a list of suicide hotline numbers broken down by state. While a valuable resource, many won’t take the time to utilize it when it is most needed.
Some states, like Wisconsin, have ensured local suicide hotline numbers are readily accessible. In March of last year, Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers signed a bill that requires all new Wisconsin student IDs to include information for multiple suicide prevention hotlines. This bill includes all K-12 schools and all colleges, both public and private.
On October 17, 2020, The National Suicide Hotline Designation Act of 2020 was signed into law by Former President Donald Trump. This Act states that by July 2022, all telecommunications carriers (including interconnected and one-way VoIP Service Providers) must direct all 988 calls to the existing National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. The hotline gives an easy-to-remember 3-digit phone number to anyone in a crisis within the US. Much like 911.
ClearlyIP understands the importance of this Act, and although there was a two-year transition period, we already have the 988 quick-dial feature integrated into our SIP Trunking Platforms. Therefore all our Partners and Customers across the United States can support the 988 3-digit connectivity on their systems to ensure everyone has unhindered direct access to the National Suicide Center.
Establishing the easy-to-remember 988 as the “911” for suicide prevention and mental health services will make it easier for Americans in crisis to access the help they need and decrease the stigma surrounding suicide and mental health issues. ClearlyIP is here to help ensure you have this implemented and working on your systems as 988 is the best option for increasing access to crisis resources.
For information on how to enable 988 on ClearlyIP’s trunking service, please refer to our wiki page here: https://kb.clearlyip.com/trunking/Enabling-988-Suicide-Prevention-Hotline-Calling.html.