Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly praised the action in the House Energy and Commerce’s Communication and Technology Subcommittee to pass H.R. 2345, the companion to his bipartisan National Suicide Hotline Improvement Act. Donnelly introduced the Senate version of this bill with Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) in May 2017 and it passed the Senate unanimously last November.
Donnelly said, “The rising suicide rate in Indiana is a disturbing trend that warrants a significant and sustained response, as each death devastates loved-ones, friends, and the community. I’m proud of the work the Senate did to unanimously pass my bipartisan legislation with Senator Hatch that would examine how we can improve the suicide prevention hotline, and I’m pleased that the House Energy and Commerce Committee is working on this as well. I hope that the House quickly passes this bill.”
The bipartisan National Suicide Hotline Improvement Act aims to reform the current suicide prevention lifeline system and Veterans Crisis Line by requiring the Federal Communications Commission—in consultation with the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Veterans Affairs—to study the current national suicide hotline system and make recommendations to Congress on how we can improve it, including whether to use an easy to remember 3-digit suicide hotline number to better connect those in peril to crucial crisis resources.
Donnelly has worked tirelessly and effectively to improve mental health care and address the scourge of suicide. Those efforts have included authoring legislation that has been signed into law to combat suicide among servicemembers and to help law enforcement agencies establish or enhance mental health services for their officers. To read more about those efforts, click here.