We did it! Because of actions you took, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed the bipartisan S. 2661, the National Suicide Hotline Designation Act, yesterday. This bill is an important step toward making 9-8-8, a nationwide three-digit dialing code for mental health crises and suicide prevention, operational. It passed the Senate earlier this year and will now go to the President’s desk to be signed into law.
Mental health crises deserve a mental health response and this law helps us get one step closer to that reality. This win is especially meaningful during Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has already passed a major hurdle and approved 9-8-8, with a goal to have it available by July 2022.* S. 2661 will make 9-8-8 fully operational and provide resources to meet the demand for mental health services. When a person is in a mental health crisis, they should be connected to mental health support instead of ending up in the back of a police car. This law will help make that possible.
And this victory is because of the power of your voice and that of tens of thousands of other mental health advocates calling for a better way to help people with mental health conditions and their loved ones during a mental health crisis.
Please take a minute to celebrate and also thank your Representative for their support!
The new three-digit number will not be operational until July 2022. Experiencing a crisis? Please call the National Suicide Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text “NAMI” to 741741.