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National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

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Lifeline Overview

Mission

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides free and confidential emotional support to people in suicidal crisis or emotional distress 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Since its inception, the Lifeline has engaged in a variety of initiatives to improve crisis services and advance suicide prevention.

History

The U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and the Mental Health Association of New York City (MHA of NYC) launched the Lifeline on January 1, 2005. MHA of NYC’s independent subsidiary, Link2Health Solutions, Inc. (L2HS), the administrator of the grant, works with its partners, the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors (NASMHPD) and MHA of NYC to manage the project, along with Living Works, Inc., an internationally respected organization specializing in suicide intervention skills training. The Lifeline is independently evaluated by a federally-funded investigation team from Columbia University’s Research Foundation for Mental Hygiene. L2HS receives ongoing consultation and guidance from national suicide prevention experts, consumer advocates, and other stakeholders through the Lifeline’s Steering Committee, Consumer/Survivor Subcommittee, and Standards, Training and Practices Subcommittee.

1-800-SUICIDE

All calls from 1-800-SUICIDE have been routed through the Lifeline network since March 2007.

Veterans Crisis Line

Since 2007, the Lifeline has been providing special suicide prevention service for U.S. military veterans through an agreement with the Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA) and U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). When dialing 1-800-273-TALK (8255), veterans, active military, and their families are prompted, during the automated greeting, to press “1” to be connected to a veterans suicide prevention hotline specialist located in the VA call center in New York.