To download the video visit:
Rough computer-generated transcription:
Commissioner Judy Fitzgerald 00:00
The most important thing is we are changing the conversation and reducing stigma about people who are experiencing mental health crises. That's what 988 is, is enabling, but we are just getting started.
Commissioner Judy Fitzgerald 00:26
So, first and foremost, 988 is a lifeline for individuals in need of support in need of someone to talk to. Or you might be calling for someone else who is in crisis, and you don't know what to do. 988 is going to be that easy to remember, three digit number for people to dial
Wendy White Tiegreen 00:53
988 is going to likely be one of the greatest transformations that the public sector behavioral health system is going to experience.
Rachel Holloman 01:02
It is three numbers, it is easy to remember. And it is something that is going to change the landscape of crisis work of mental health and substance abuse work in suicide prevention, not only in the state of Georgia, but nationwide, not aid for the rural communities is a really big deal. It is going to bring more services to our rural communities, it's going to be an easier number for them to remember
Dawn Peel 01:25
my role and my office is relatively HDD is to ensure that that the main parts of the system that there's someone to talk to that there's someone to respond, and there's somewhere a safe place to go for help.
Commissioner Judy Fitzgerald 01:46
I can't say enough about how important the workforce and the capacity is, technology will help but in the end, this is human business. It's people calling in meeting the ear, and the compassion and the professional response from another person. So we've done so many different things to try and build the workforce
Anna Bourque 02:13
during the last two years, we had a 24% increase in call volume. And so we have had staffing challenges like the rest of the state has had staffing challenges, in terms of this is a very demanding job.
Commissioner Judy Fitzgerald 02:24
We've done a few short term investments. But I really want to point to the long term investments about the pipeline of the future. One of the ways that we're doing that is through what's called service cancelable loans. So we have to make it easier for people to go to school, and practice and be licensed and then forgive loans where we can and entice people to stay in this work. I think it's important to acknowledge here in Georgia, we've really had a remarkable experience over the last year, Governor camp speaker Ralston and other elected officials at the highest levels of this state have said, by virtue of legislation that has been passed funds that have been committed committed mental health as a priority in Georgia, we don't expect that system transformation will occur overnight. What we do expect is that we and our partners are doing everything possible to make that call as easy as possible and to make the response as direct as possible to meet individuals needs and know that we are committed to the building work ahead and in partnership with all of the other entities that are going to be a part of our success. We are committed to getting this right, but just know we've got a long journey ahead together.
In five years, my goal is that the general public will be aware that 98 is out there. And that help is just three digits away.
Anna Bourque 04:06
In five years, I hope to see that 988 is as ubiquitous as 911 or two one that is a GA it's just a service that's available to you 24 hours a day, seven days a week and you can always reach someone who can support you should you be having a behavioral health crisis, and that our system is able to support people as they call
Monica Johnson 04:24
five years from now. One I would hope that it did have an impact on stigma, that that number is something that is not looked at in a shameful way. That is something that people can be proud of that people can access and share amongst their family and their friends.
Rachel Holloman 04:41
I hope to see not a date as a household name. I hope that there is trust and not a date for my Georgia citizens. I hope that we are closer to that future without suicide in Georgia
Wendy White Tiegreen 04:54
wellness for mental health. Wellness for addiction is achievable. Recap Every is achievable. And so with 988 This is just one more step in terms of saying, we are creating pathways for hope. We are creating pathways for wellness. You can get care in your most critical moments.