Washington, D.C. — Yesterday evening, the National Suicide Hotline Improvement Act, sponsored by Senators Joe Donnelly and Orrin Hatch, passed unanimously in the Senate. This critical suicide prevention legislation would require the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to study the national suicide prevention hotline system and to make recommendations to improve it—including whether to use a particular easy-to-remember, 3-digit suicide hotline number to better connect those in peril to crucial crisis resources.
Donnelly said, “I’m pleased our bipartisan legislation has passed the Senate, because it could make a difference for families in Indiana and across the country. This legislation would require the Federal Communications Commission to review the national suicide prevention hotline, including whether a particular three-digit dialing number should replace the current ten-digit number to make it easier for teenagers, veterans, or anyone experiencing a mental health crisis to seek help. I hope the House will quickly pass this legislation.”
Hatch said, “Over the last year, I’ve met with dozens of families who have lost loved ones to suicide. The parents I spoke with said that in their moments of crisis, they didn’t know where to turn for help. While there is no perfect solution to this devastating problem, this legislation is a step in the right direction. By providing those who suffer with faster, easier access to lifesaving resources, we can prevent countless tragedies. I urge my colleagues in the House to act quickly on this crucial legislation, and get it to the president’s desk to be signed into law.”