State Cuts Funding to Local Mental Health Hotline

A non-emergency hotline used by those who are struggling with mental health issues will be closing after the state withdrew funding.

The Southwest Missouri Warmline, operated by the Springfield office of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, will close next Tuesday. The line is a number where people who are struggling with mental illness can call for a “warm hand off” to a peer who is recovering from a mental health crisis.

The state informed the group the cut in funding was related to COVID-19.

The local NAMI chapter has been hit hard by the COVID-19 lockdown, with such a significant drop in financial donations that they’ve had to tap into emergency funds. Therefore they aren’t able to cover the shortfall with the loss of state funding.

The organization hopes to be able to return the hotline to service if they can find a local donor or donors to help cover the $35,000 from the state dedicated to the service.

People who need emergency mental health help will still be able to call NAMI’s national hotline of 800-950-6264.

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