PERTH COUNTY – At its May 20 meeting, Perth County council passed a resolution to support establishing a national three-digit suicide and crisis hotline intended to consolidate all existing suicide crisis numbers into one hotline.
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has significantly increased the demand for suicide prevention services and existing suicide prevention hotlines require the user to remember a 10-digit number with some guiding callers who are in crisis to navigate directories or be placed on hold.
In 2022 the United States will have a national 988 crisis hotline in place and municipalities across Canada are pushing for a similar crisis line north of the border.
“What they are proposing is a three-digit number as opposed to a ten-digit number that most people couldn’t get their hand on anyway,” said Warden Jim Aitcheson. “In a state of crisis, I’m thinking the three digits would be the way to go.”
Colin Burrowes, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Listowel Banner