Many groups—non-profit organizations, businesses, charitable foundations, and others—routinely disseminate messages about suicide in websites, social media, educational materials, and other print and digital communications. It is important that this information be conveyed in ways that support suicide prevention rather than increase risk.
Although guidance on safe messaging has long been available to the news media, similar resources had not been developed for others who communicate publicly about suicide. The Action Alliance's Framework for Successful Messaging was designed to fill that gap. This online resource provides guidance and tools that can be used by anyone who develops and disseminates suicide-related content.
In July 2022, the U.S.-based National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (800-273-8255) will transition to 988—an easy to remember three-digit dialing, texting, and chat code for anyone experiencing a suicidal or mental health crisis or emotional distress. To help align 988 messaging across state agencies, crisis centers, non-profit organizations, businesses, foundations, and other organizations messaging to the public about 988, the Action Alliance released a 988 Messaging Framework, which provides general guidanc around when and how to develop messages about 988. This important new resource was developed in collaboration with a 988 Messaging Task Force co-led by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) and Vibrant Emotional Health (operational home of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline), the national leads of 988 rollout and implementation.
Knowing how to help others and getting access to care continue to be among top barriers–underscoring urgent need for collective action