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September 22, 2021

Record numbers turn to Lifeline for mental health support

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September 21: NNSWLHD COVID update and Byron-Tweed lockdown

The Northern NSW Local Health District held a press conference at Lismore Base Hospital this afternoon.

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According to new data released by Lifeline Australia today, the three busiest days in Lifeline’s 57-year history have been this month with the service receiving 3,436 calls on Monday.

Lifeline is a non-profit organisation that provides free, 24-hour telephone crisis support service in Australia. Volunteer crisis supporters provide suicide prevention services, mental health support and emotional assistance, via telephone, face-to-face and online.

The record-smashing demand for the suicide prevention line is a reminder that we are in a physical and mental health pandemic.

The number of calls in received through August so far exceeds 2019 demand by 30 per cent.

Lifeline Australia chair John Brogden said the good news is that people who need support are reaching out and they’re getting it. ‘While Monday was our busiest day on record, it wasn’t a one-off. It’s been a difficult few years for everyone in the community, but this also means that Australians know help is there when they need it.

’In the same period two years ago we were averaging under 2,500 calls, our new record is almost 40 per cent higher.

Demand has grown 20 per cent since 2019

‘We’ve seen demand grow 20 per cent since 2019 and it continues to ramp up. Five of Lifeline’s 10 busiest days on record have occurred just this month.’

Mr Brogden said Lifeline volunteers have been working harder than ever since 2019 to support people at risk, and they need support to continue operating at this pace.

‘We need the community to support volunteers who are working harder than ever.

‘These are challenging times, it is ok not to be feeling ok.

‘Connecting with others is key. If you, or someone you know are feeling overwhelmed, we encourage you to connect with Lifeline in the way you feel most comfortable.

‘Either phone us to speak to a Crisis Supporter on 13 11 14 (24 hours/7 days), or chat to us online at www.lifeline.org.au (7pm – midnight, 7 nights),’ said Mr Brogden.

Lifeline’s 10 busiest days on record have occurred in the last 2 years, 5 of them this month:


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