Monday, December 10, 2007

1-800-SUICIDE Hotline

Once again our wonderful federal government is preparing to meddle and take control of something that has been handled privately just fine. The Kristin Brooks Hope Center has operated several toll-free suicide hotlines for people in crisis. They operate largely by trained volunteers, and there are links on a huge number of web sites that direct people to these phone lines. Just as an example, you may be familiar with the Post Secret blog (the Link for there is on the right side under links---------> ) , a site which gets hundreds of thousands hits every day. Now the feds want to re-assign these toll free numbers to SAMHSA, a fed program, and I ask, why? Calls to suicide hotlines are, by their very nature, likely to contain information of a personal nature, and do we really need Big Brother, with their ability to wiretap and eavesdrop on citizens without warrants, listening in when people are in crisis? I think not. Below is the email I received from KBHC on this, feel free to contact the FCC at (link just below in large type) and file your own comment on this. I am also deeply suspicious of the FCC's motive in doing this during the holiday season, and in having such a short public comment period, and I wonder who stands to gain by having Uncle Sam try to take this function over by bootstrapping on the reputation of a private charitable group of proven effectiveness?

And if you wanted to donate to KBHC, they can always use help in paying their telephone bills too.

The links probably will not work, but go to
for the proceeding number, enter 07-271
fill in the form, and enter a brief comment at the bottom, then "submit". You should get an acknowledgment reply, with a number.

E-mail received today:

Dear Friends of the Hopeline,

We thank you for your support of our organization and 1-800-SUICIDE over the last few years.

We need your help ... again. This time in addition to financial support what we really need today is a letter of support.

The feds (SAMHSA) are moving to try to take permanent control of 3 of our hotlines using the timing of the holiday season hoping no one will be around to file a response. They filed the day before Thanksgiving and gave our attorneys no notice of the filing. Not very cricket of them.

We are asking our supporters to file comments with the FCC before they grant permanent assignment of 1-800-SUICIDE to the SAMHSA. If you could file a comment in support of us and ask any of your friends and colleagues to stand up for us it would make a difference. We need your public support more than ever. If we shine a bright enough light on them they will not be able to hide from the truth.

It is important to note that our organization operates 13 national suicide hotlines and while 1-800-SUICIDE is our largest program we will continue to prevent suicide among our veterans with our 1-877-VET2VET, new moms suffering post partum depression with 1-800-PPD-MOMS, teens with our 877-YOUTHLINE as well as many other targeted populations with 10 other specialty hotlines. We are not in danger of being shut down but we are about to lose our primary outreach of help and hope. Either way we will continue our life saving work. (see for a complete list)

I hope you and your family have a great holiday. All we want for the Holidays is the return of the control of our numbers.

Suggested minimal language...

We urge the FCC to grant the Kristin Brooks Hope Center Application for Review and return the toll free hotline numbers to KBHC promptly. If necessary to accomplish that, we support a temporary extension of the 12 month temporary re-assignment.

But please feel free to add or write your own comments about why it is important that 1-800-SUICIDE remain non government owned and controlled.

To file comments CLICK HERE
Type in 07-271 for the proceeding (docket) number.

To read what others have written CLICK HERE

The postings just began today and the window closes on the 12th of December. It is a very brief window for public comment. This is so unfair. Last year when they did this we ran a campaign that generated over 800 letters written and filed. They do not want a repeat of that and are counting on us having no show of strength in support from people who care. So please help us today. It will make a difference. Your financial support in the past has helped us survive to this point. We hope you will continue to support us in the future.

Best always,

Reese Butler -

President and Founder
Kristin Brooks Hope Center
National Hopeline Network 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433)
Administrative Office:
615 7th Street NE
Washington, DC 20002
202-536-3206 fax

Click to go to the Save 1-800-SUICIDE site and read more details

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