EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WFIE) - 9-8-8. Those three numbers could help save a life.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) took a huge step forward on Thursday by voting to change the suicide hotline to a three-digit number.
Right now, it’s a standard 10 digit number, which gets more than 2 million calls a year. By making the number shorter, mental health experts hope it can help even more people in crisis.
“No one hesitates to call 911 for a physical and medical emergency and we’re hoping by replicating that for mental health emergencies with the three digit number for those needs people won’t hesitate to use that when they are experiencing or someone they know a mental health emergency,” explains VC Mental Health America Executive Director Emily Reidford.
There will be a public comment period before the FCC makes an order to change the number.
For now, the suicide hotline remains1-800-273-8255. The hotline is always open for calls and is free and confidential.