Suicide lifeline service expanded to full-time, Wyoming-based coverage

CHEYENNE (WNE) – The state’s suicide lifeline services have been expanded and improved to offer full-time, Wyoming-based coverage 24 hours a day, every day, Gov. Mark Gordon announced Monday.

“Wyoming citizens experiencing a mental health crisis and potentially suicidal thoughts can now be confident that on the other end of the line, they’re talking to someone who – as a fellow state resident – is familiar with our state and cares about our people,” Gordon said in a statement.

While the U.S. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline has been available via phone (1-800-273-TALK) for many years, calls from state residents before 2020 were answered by people outside the state. 

Wyoming-based services hours were limited due to funding availability. Full-time, all-day, every-day Wyoming-based coverage began last week. 

The governor asked the Legislature to fund the service and expand its availability during the 2022 legislative session and said now he appreciates their support for this initiative.

“We are confident that the personal connection and the ability to make localized referrals for help will be improved when Wyoming folks can speak to an understanding person in their own state,” Gordon added. “This critical and free service for those who need it is something I have emphasized for quite some time.”

Stefan Johansson, Wyoming Department of Health director, encouraged people in distress and concerned about suicidal thoughts they may be having to call the lifeline for help.