Mental health issues to be addressed in the 2022 legislative session

PIERRE, S.D.(KYNT)- One of the tasks legislators will face in Pierre next month will be discussion on the next steps for implementing a hotline for South Dakotans experiencing a behavioral health crisis.

The South Dakota Department of Social Services has announced their mental health initiatives, including implementing the 988 suicide hotline by the national deadline of July 2022.

South Dakota Sheriffs Association Executive Director Staci Akerman says this new hotline will help individuals receive the most efficient care possible.

Akerman adds that every mental health crisis is different and unique.

The 988 number is a part of a nationwide effort to support an easily recognizable number for individuals going through a mental health crisis.