Canes Covering Coronavirus, Illinois

Illinois creates anonymous mental health hotline

Isabella Popadiuk
Bartlett, Illinois
2 p.m. Thursday, April 30

Illinois creates anonymous mental health hotline

Whether you are stuck in a house with your family or in an apartment by yourself or with a significant other, everyone has been cooped up during this pandemic.

It is easy to feel stir crazy and irritated with other people; you are not alone. It is extremely important to take care of your physical and mental health at home. I know for myself, it is hard trying to stay happy and motivated in Illinois’ constant depressing, cold and gray weather.

I need the sun.

While my family and I have been fortunate during the COVID-19 crisis, not as many families have been as lucky as we. As millions of Americans have lost their jobs, are having trouble paying bills or stuck in a toxic environment with an abuser, it is important for them to have support and the resources on how to access different services.

To help ease people’s tension and stress of being stuck at home, the Illinois Department of Human Services’ Mental Health Division has created the Call4Calm emotional support hotline. Call4Calm is an anonymous text line where Illinois residents can send a text to the hotline and within 24 hours, receive a call back from a locally employed mental health professional for support.

It is as easy as texting “TALK” to 5-5-2-0-2-0, or for Spanish, “HABLAR” to the same number. After, type a few keywords to receive specific information, such as “unemployment.”

“My administration is here to serve you and help see you through this time of crisis,” Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said. “This text line is just one more way that we can meet you where you are.”

I hope residents try and use the new state provided resource to make sure they stay safe and mentally healthy during the stay-at-home order, which in Illinois has now been extended through the end of May.

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