California residents in need of non-emergency emotional help can now call or instant message people at a hotline that debuted statewide Monday, just ahead of World Mental Health Day.
The California Peer-Run Warm Line, available at 1-855-845-7415, will be staffed for most of the day to start. It's deliberately called a "warm line" because it's supposed to arrange for help before the situation raises to a "hotline" level.
"When addressing issues surrounding health, the conversation must also include emotional wellness. This new state resource builds on our current mental health system by serving a population that is not in crisis but still in need of support," said Assembly Budget Committee Chair Phil Ting, D-San Francisco.
Those behind the service hope that the hotline will prevent the need for expensive crisis-based interventions, like hospital stays. The hotline will also help refer those who call to other available services.
While the warm line will be staffed for most of the day to start -- 7 a.m.-11 p.m. Monday through Friday, 7 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday and 7 a.m.-9 p.m. Sunday -- by the end of the year the call center is expected to be open 24/7.
"Too many Californians are struggling with mental health and emotional well-being challenges. Peer-to-peer support is a proven way of helping people stay healthy and get the help they need. The California Peer-Run Warm Line is an important resource for so many people, and I’m thrilled we were able to get it funded," State Senator Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, said in a news release.
Mental Health America says "one in five adults in the U.S. experiences mental health challenges in a given year."
Phone Number: 1-855-845-7415
- Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. – 11 p.m.
- Saturday, 7 a.m. – 3 p.m.
- Sunday, 7 a.m. – 9 p.m.