[Vision2020] Crisis Line

debismith at moscow.com debismith at moscow.com
Sun Apr 16 15:29:09 PDT 2006

Greetings, v2020 participants. I just returned from a business trip and discovered that some 
misinformation has been passed along in regards to the Palouse Regional Crisis Line.

As the Chair of the Board of Directors, it is my sad duty to inform the community that as of 
May 1st at 8 am, the Crisis Line will be closing it's phone lines. There is no chance of saving it 
as it presently exists. 

For 28 years, the Line has served five counties in Washington and Idaho. It has been one of 
the last 24 hour all volunteer crisis lines in the US. Unfortunately, for the last five years it has 
been getting more difficult to recruit volunteers, resulting in the one paid staff person taking on 
300+ hours of phone answering in a month. The budget for the Line did not accomodate more 
paid staff.  In an attempt to restructure the Line, we requested an increase in fees from the 
angencies for whom we answered phones after business hours. Some were able and willing to 
increase, some were simply unable to do so. 

The Crisis Line has been in a precarious situation for some time; several meetings beginning 
last fall alerted the agencies to the possibility of the Line closing. It truly did not come as a 
surprise to the agencies, though it likely did to many in the community. It is simply not 
feasible to keep the Line going, and there is no current way to make it sustainable.

Thanks to everyone who, over this 28 years, volunteered or donated to the Line. It has been a 
very rewarding experience for me, both as a past director of the Line and as a board member, 
to participate in such a noble effort.

Debi Robinson-Smith

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