Coronavirus and mass layoffs are causing a dramatic spike in people seeking help from crisis text hotlines

The Crisis Text Line, which operates in the US, Canada, and the UK, provides free confidential crisis intervention via text message.Over the last two weeks, the number of texts to the hotline has been 47% to 116% higher than an average day, corresponding with a dramatic spike in novel coronavirus cases, as well as historic…

Coronavirus and mass layoffs are causing a dramatic spike in people seeking help from crisis text hotlines

The Crisis Text Line, which operates in the US, Canada, and the UK, provides free confidential crisis intervention via text message.Over the last two weeks, the number of texts to the hotline has been 47% to 116% higher than an average day, corresponding with a dramatic spike in novel coronavirus cases, as well as historic unemployment in the US. The hotline has seen many texts coming in with the words “furloughed,” “laid off,” and “virus,” a spokesperson told Business Insider. The number of crisis counselor volunteers has doubled since before the pandemic. Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The novel coronavirus pandemic is a mental health crisis, too.The Crisis Text Line — a nonprofit providing free confidential crisis intervention via text message that operates in the US, Canada, and the UK — has seen a spike in the number of people reaching out for help. The hotline has seen between 47% to 116% more texts per day over the past two weeks than it does on an average day. The spike coincides with the worsening of the novel coronavirus worldwide, as well as historic layoffs in the US. Counselors affiliated with the nonprofit are seeing more people texting the terms “furloughed” “landlord,” and “layed/laid off,” signaling the economic impact of the coronavirus could be taking a severe mental toll on many, Sara Li, social media and marketing coordinator at the
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