A Guide for Ann Arbor City Officials To Improved Public Safety Services

C. Recognize 988 Will Soon Take Its Place Alongside 911

        (Numbering of principles is continuous through sections A - F.)

    5.    Public officials should emphasize the construction of policies and procedures that are appropriate after 988 is launched, which is

expected in mid-2022.  “The free, dedicated 988 line will provide around-the-clock support for people who are experiencing a … health crisis. Individuals dialing 988 will be connected to a local crisis call center in their community.”  (Source; go to this link for a two-page brief on 988)  The number 988 to be used for mental health and substance abuse crises will likely become as ubiquitous as 911 is for crises involving fires, crimes, and physical health.

 

Calls to 988 from within Washtenaw County will be routed to the WCCMH Access/Crisis Call Center at 734-544-3050.  The technical details reflect the evolution of the system over time.  Specifically, calls from anywhere to 988 will be routed to the existing National Suicide Prevention Lifeline phone number 1-800-273-8255, a.k.a. 1-800-273-TALK.  The Lifeline number will continue to be available.  The calls from within Michigan to either number will be routed to 844-446-4225 a.k.a. 844-44 MICAL.  The calls from within Washtenaw County will then be routed to WCCMH.  The routing will be invisible to the caller.  (Click here to go to a detailed discussion of these and other publicly supported telephone numbers for people in crisis or distress.)

The system introduced with 988 will be superior to current practice.  a) The three-digit number is easier to remember than a ten-digit number.  b) Calls to the Lifeline number are currently routed to the nearest available Lifeline Crisis Center.  The closest Lifeline Crisis Centers are MICAL in Oakland County (click here to go to a discussion of MICAL) and Macomb County Community Health.  Thus, current calls from Washtenaw County to the Lifeline number are answered by people less familiar with local services than are those in the WCCMH call center.

Use these links to go to other parts of the "Guide for Ann Arbor City Officials ...."

A.  Deflect and Diversion from Law Enforcement To Help Through Counseling and Therapy

B.  Respond To the Current Crisis Among Children and Youth

D.  Recognize and Utilize Local Expertise

E.  Recognize People -- Not Abstract "Institutions" -- Implement Policies

F.  Evaluation