Phone companies must allow texting new ’988′ suicide line | NAMI

Phone companies must allow texting new ’988′ suicide line

Posted on November 18, 2021

The FCC will require that phone companies allow people to text as well as call a new “988” number for the suicide-prevention hotline. Phone companies have until July 2022 to implement the 988 number for both calling and texting. “Texting to 988 is a huge step forward in improving how you address mental health,” said Hannah Wesolowski, interim national director of government relations, policy and advocacy at NAMI. “Text messaging is a central part of how people communicate and for many individuals the primary way they communicate.” She said that that demand for the hotline “is going to skyrocket” next year when the 988 system is fully in place and people actually know about it, and that resources are going to have to increase as well so that people’s calls and texts are answered.


NAMI HelpLine is available M-F, 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. ET. Call 800-950-6264,
text “helpline” to 62640, or chat online. In a crisis, call or text 988 (24/7).