988: The Mental Health And Substance Abuse Hotline

DULUTH, Minn. — A local group in Duluth is launching a campaign to educate people on the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline.

“Everyone knows what 911 is, but 988 is the 911 for a mental health crisis or substance abuse crisis,” explained Jerry Thoreson, a member of the 2023 Leadership Duluth class and organizer of the campaign.

If you or someone you know needs help with mental health or substance abuse, the crisis line is staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by professional counselors who can offer emotional help and other services.

“Just breathe” is the tagline Leadership Duluth has created to educate people about 988. Organizers say the tagline promotes taking a deep breath to create a pause between our perceptions and our actions during a moment of distress.

You’ll soon be seeing the phrase around town on billboards.

Students will see it on posters in schools, and it will also be posted in coffee shops and other businesses.

Radio and television ads are also being created.

988 is not just a phone line, you can text 988 or chat online at 988lifeline.org. It’s free and confidential.


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