Wednesday, February 18, 2020 – Crisis Services Canada (CSC) announced today that Suicide Action Montréal (SAM) has joined the Canada Suicide Prevention Service (CSPS) network to provide French-language suicide prevention voice support to those in Canada outside Quebec. SAM began providing service February 17, 2020 as part of a pilot project to create a service hub providing suicide prevention support to Francophones outside of Quebec across Canada. CSPS is operated by CSC via a network of five partnered distress centres across Canada.
“CSC is delighted that the high-calibre, French language suicide prevention support offered by SAM is now part of CSPS.” said Stephanie MacKendrick, Chief Executive Officer of CSC. “This provides much-needed, easily accessible French-language support outside of Quebec, in accordance with CSPS’s rigorous clinical standards. The growing CSPS network not only means more reliable, accessible and equitable support for those in need, but enables a knowledge exchange across award-winning Canadian distress centres, such as SAM.” Previously, CSPS provided telephone support in French via translation services.
As of February 17, 2020, SAM is providing service from 8am to midnight (Eastern), with plans to expand voice support hours and to also provide support via text and chat in the near future.
“SAM was established in 1984, and has since supported an average of 27,000 interactions yearly, in both English and French,” said Luc Vallerand, Executive Director of Suicide Action Montréal. “SAM is pleased to expand its mandate beyond Montréal in order to provide French-language support to people in need across Canada, outside of Quebec. This partnership will enable real-time, natural communication in French, removing some of the obstacles Francophones experience when seeking support.”
Over the past 35 years, SAM has grown exponentially. The high quality of its service has been widely recognized, including The Award of Excellence for “Exceptional Work in the Field of Suicide Prevention” from the American Association of Suicidology in 2004. SAM has also been recognized by the Minister of Health and Social Services of the Government of Quebec for its partnership in creating the “Estimation tool for suicide danger”. And in 2017 received the Hommage bénévolat – Québec award.
SAM joins CSPS as the latest addition to a growing network. Launched with seven (now consolidated to three), distress centre partners across Canada in November 2017, in 2019 the Crisis Prevention, Intervention & Information Centre of Northern BC joined the network. CSPS is in the process of adding a further three distress centres.
If you or someone you know is thinking of suicide:
Canada Suicide Prevention Service
Toll-free Phone, 24/7: 1-833-456-4566
Text*, 4PM to 12AM ET: 45645 (standard messaging fees based on your contract may apply) *French text support is currently unavailable
For Quebec residents
Toll-free telephone, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week: 1-886-APPELLE (1-866-277-3553)
For more information contact:
Manager, Marketing and External Relations
Crisis Services Canada
In French :
Suicide Action Montréal
Or visit: www.CrisisServicesCanada.ca