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Sharing Our Stories and Listening

Safe and Effective Messaging in Suicide Prevention

As a suicide prevention community, one of our primary goals is increasing public awareness and educating people about suicide.  There are many good documents that provide evidence-based recommendations for creating safe and effective messages to raise public awareness that suicide is a serious and preventable public health problem.  The SPRC, National Action Alliance, AFSP, SAMSHA and many others have put forth guidelines to help us with awareness campaigns, as well as educational and training efforts in the community.  All agree that there are definite Dos and Don'ts.  In addition to message content, we also need to think about our targeted audiences and the best ways to reach them-i.e.-internet, social media platforms, places of work and worship, etc.

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A Crisis Chatline Counselor's Tips For Being a Better Digital Listener

Effective Intervention When Face-to-Face is Not an Option

Chris Lazarus is the Assistant Director of Operations, Online and Bilingual Services at Response Crisis Center. Recently, she partnered with Michelle Kuchuk, M.S Best Practices in Clinical Technologies at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, and shared with us a few tips for maintaining a trusting tone with an individual in need of guidance and support on a digital chatline. As Chris and Michelle point out, there are many parts of human interaction that get 'lost-in-digital-translation', whether it be posture, facial expressions, or other nonverbal cues, operating the digital chatline is a delicate process that demands a gentle approach to expression and an even more dynamic approach to listening and understanding.

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