This story has Unlimited Access. Please support our commitment to public service journalism. Subscribe now.

Large portions of Missouri and Arkansas will see a change this week in how they use their phone when dialing as the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) establishes 988 as the new, nationwide, 3-digit phone number for Americans in crisis to connect with suicide prevention and mental health crisis counselors. The FCC adopted this rule on July 16, 2020. 

Beginning Sunday, Oct. 24, you must dial 10-digits (area code + telephone number) for all local calls.  On and after this date, local calls dialed with only 7-digits may not be completed, and a recording will inform you that your call cannot be completed as dialed.  You must hang up and dial again using the area code and the 7-digit number.

Beginning July 16, 2022, dialing “988” will route your call to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

In Missouri, 417, 660, 314, and 816 area codes will be affected by the change

The rules require phone service providers to direct all 988 calls to the existing National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by July 16, 2022.  To ensure that calls to 988 reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, certain parts of the country will need to transition to 10-digit dialing beginning  Monday.

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply