House adopts Don Beyer’s suicide prevention amendment

Don BeyerThe House of Representatives today agreed to a suicide prevention amendment offered by Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA). The amendment allocates funds for a feasibility study regarding the adoption of geolocation for the Suicide Lifeline, which connects callers to local support services.

The United States is presently experiencing a rise in suicides, and calls to the Suicide Lifeline are rapidly increasing, but call centers still often rely on area codes which do not reflect the real-life location of many cell phone users.

“The incidence of suicide in the United States is rising at an alarming rate, and Congress must do everything that we can to help stop it,” said Beyer. “My amendment would give the Suicide Lifeline tools to update their network and provide lifesaving care to those at risk of suicide who need it most. I thank my colleagues from both parties for their strong support of this measure, and will continue to seek additional action to boost the government’s response to the country’s suicide epidemic. I strongly encourage anyone in crisis to call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 800-273-TALK.”

Text of Beyer’s amendment, Amendment 52 to H.R. 2740 – the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, Defense, State, Foreign Operations, and Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act, is available here; the measure passed 359-64.

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