Lifeline planning pilot program specifically for LGBTQ+ community

WAFF's Jasmyn Cornell reporting
Published: Sep. 15, 2022 at 7:28 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - The nonprofit that operates the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline on behalf of the US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) plans to soon launch a pilot program for LGBTQ+ individuals to call.

Vibrant, an agency under the Department of Health and Human Services, is hoping the program will add a more specialized crisis line for the community, eliminate barriers, and provide affirming support.

Members of the community are at an overall increased risk of violence and are at a greater risk for suicide attempts, according to the CDC.

According to The Trevor Project, LGBTQ+ youth are more than four times as likely to attempt suicide than their peers.

“Studies have consistently shown that the presence of one supportive adult in the life of a young LGBT person can reduce their suicide risk substantially,” said Daniel Walker, the outreach director of GLSEN Huntsville. So, these resources, you know, whatever they are, in any format are going to be tremendous for saving lives.”

Vibrant has not released a launch date for the program, but the organization hopes that it will become a permanent subnetwork of the Lifeline.

“I personally find it extremely moving that this has been created, and I know it will save lives and continue to move inclusion and equality forward,” said Walker.

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