WMATA to provide visibility of new ‘988’ crisis lifeline throughout stations

March 29, 2023
WMATA will display the number on station entrances, platforms and top garage levels.

Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) will be enhancing the visibility of a new nationwide three-digit Suicide and Crisis Lifeline number, 988, to help individuals experiencing a life-threatening crisis. The number will be visible on enhanced signs at WMATA station entrances, platforms and top garage levels.

The three-digit nationwide phone number is available for anyone having a suicidal crisis or mental health related distress. Individuals can speak directly with trained crisis counselors 24/7. All calls and texts are free and confidential.

The 988 number does not replace calling 9-1-1 or MYMTPD for immediate medical and emergency situations.

The public awareness initiative echoes #YourMetro commitment to providing crisis support, safety and wellness resources to its customers. The initiative is the result of WMATA's Suicide Prevention and Awareness Taskforce.

“Mental health issues have become increasingly prevalent in the United States in recent years, and the COVID-19 pandemic has only exacerbated this trend,” said WMATA General Manager and CEO Randy Clarke. “As more people experience symptoms of anxiety, depression and other mental health conditions, it is imperative that we increase our efforts to provide support and resources. We truly want people to get the help they need.”

In addition to the displays, Crisis Intervention Specialists continue to work collaboratively with Metropolitan Transit Police Department officers by assisting individuals in crisis and those who often experience mental and substance use disorders.