Friday, August 11, 2006

Save 1-800-SUICIDE: Time is running out!

A few posts ago, I wrote on the federal government's decision to shutdown the 1-800-SUICIDE network in favor of a government-operated system where the government WILL HAVE ACCESS to confidential information or they'll take over the operation. Nonetheless, this does not bode well for the hotline which is 6 hours away from being shutdown. People who call these hotlines rely on confidentiality for numerous reasons. Perhaps they don't want their families to know of their crisis, perhaps they don't want an employer getting word of how he/she called the hotline. Imagine what employers can do to a suicidal person including termination for reasons to cut health care costs?

Our government has room to fund pork projects including that damn bridge to nowhere (a village of 50 people) but cannot fork over badly-needed funds to support the hotline so it can pay its $266,000 bill just because it refused to turn over management to the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Service Administration (SAMHSA)?

"Our concern is that in order for suicide hotlines to be effective, the lines must be completely confidential," Save-1-800-SUICIDE spokesman Scott Goodstein told RAW STORY today. "Who will call a suicide hotline if there is any fear that a record of the call can be made by the government or if they are concerned their call might be logged into a government database?" he asked.

This administration has been the most intrusive into our private lives whether it's through domestic wiretapping or this. We cannot allow SAMHSA to get its hands on confidential information. Who can trust a hotline that will just feed its calls to an interested government? Who can trust a hotline that is controlled by a government interested in getting into our bedrooms and our private lives?

What we have to do
Tell the feds to keep their hands off the hotline...


Well said,i applaud your blog, mental health consumers are the least capable of self advocacy,my doctors made me take zyprexa for 4 years which was ineffective for my symptoms.I now have a victims support page against Eli Lilly for it's Zyprexa product causing my diabetes.--Daniel Haszard
I admire and thank you your courage in taking on a heartless, money-driven corporation. We need people like you to hold these big companies accountable for the damage they do in the name of profit. Once I figure out how to put links on my blog (I'm so inept when it comes to this), I shall include your webpage on it.
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