OLYMPIA – Washington state’s The Native and Strong Lifeline to launch next Thursday, Nov. 17, is dedicated to American Indian and Alaska Native populations. It is the first such lifeline in the nation. Historical trauma, disproportionate poverty, and other factors contribute to an increased risk of suicide for Native populations.
Washington state launched a statewide 9-8-8 crisis line earlier this year, meaning help is now just three digits away for any Washingtonian in crisis. The state is now focusing on culturally-specific options to support at-risk groups.
Native and Strong Lifeline operators are all tribal members or descendants, and they receive specialized training to help American Indian and Alaska Native people through crises.