Friday, Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba announced the launch of the City’s first-ever Mental Health ‘Warmline’, designed to help citizens cope with the mental toll of self-isolation during the COVID-19 public health crisis.
“We are here to announce that the City of Jackson will be launching a ‘Warmline’- a warmline for people to call who are experiencing increased levels of depression, anxiety, and feeling overwhelmed by all of the stress of the circumstances that are taking place. We understand that we are living in a very extraordinary moment where people are not only dealing with financial stress, but they are dealing with the stress of being cooped up in their homes and not being able to have the social outlets that they are normally accustomed to. And so, we believe that it is important that we make available to them services that can help them talk through their anxiety and depression,” explained Mayor Lumumba.
The warmline, developed through the COVID-19 Mental Health Subcommittee led by Chief of Staff, Dr. Safiya Omari and Director of Human & Cultural Services, Dr. Adrianne Dorsey-Kidd, will be staffed with licensed clinical social workers who will assess the mental health concerns of citizens and connect callers to mental health providers.
From 7:00 am – 7:00 pm, Monday through Friday, anyone experiencing symptoms of depression, anxiety, or just needing someone to talk to can call the warmline at601-586-3073 or 866-300-7948.
To further reach as many people as possible, Pastor CJ Rhodes and Dr. Timothy Neyland have taken the lead from the faith community to partner with the City of Jackson to counsel individuals in an effort to dispel the stigma around seeking mental health assistance beyond pastoral care.
“Pastors are often first responders when it comes to our people seeking counsel and care. However, many pastors aren’t trained to address certain emotional and mental issues, and so I welcome the warmline as a helpful resource to assist us in holistically serving our communities better,” said Pastor Rhodes
Pastor and Clinical Social Worker, Dr. Neyland, will lead in training local pastors to identify and refer individuals with mental health concerns to the warmline.
“One of the most resilient factors in individuals striving and surviving is their spiritual health- the spiritual aspect of what’s going on in their lives and we’re so happy to have the clergymen and the faith-based council to come on to be trained to focus on providing services to the great citizens of Jackson to make sure that we’re addressing every issue that they may have,” said Dr. Neyland.
The City of Jackson Mental Health Warmline goes live on Monday, April 27, 2020, and will continue to operate beyond the COVID-19 pandemic to address the mental health needs of the city.