(Files by Brendan Pawliw-MyPGNow)
Anyone in suicidal crisis in Canada might soon have access to a three-digit suicide helpline, a motion that’s been tabled by Cariboo-Prince George MP Todd Doherty.
Momentum for 988 continues to gain traction after a 19-year-old woman from London, Ontario launched a petition to bring the service to Canada where it has netted 32-thousand signatures so far.
The goal is to reach 35,000 signatures.
Federal Health Minister Patty Hajdu told Vista Radio the behind-the-scenes work is being done to try and bring the service to Canada.
“That work is actually underway with Health Canada and we are communicating with my colleague Minister (Navdeep) Bains on the CRTC (Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission) side, obviously we need their permission to utilize a three-digit line.”
She added Ottawa wants to make sure anyone who accesses such a service gets the support they need in a timely fashion.
“What we want is to make sure that when someone utilizes a service like that they get the right support at the right time so that work is happening and I have committed to MP Doherty that this work happens as quickly as possible.”
In 2022, US citizens will be able to call 988 to receive help when in crisis. after it was passed by the Federal Communications Commission in July.
Right now, Canada offers a free online portal called Wellness Together Canada for anyone seeking Mental Health and Substance Use Support.