OP’s Suicide Prevention Line Saving Lives

February 28, 2007

Just this morning, we received three calls on our suicide prevention line.  About half of the 15,000 calls we get on our crisis lines each year come to the suicide hotline.

There’s no doubt that OP operates the very best crisis lines in the state.  Our volunteers undergo 60 hours of intense training and are aided by our two-fulltime staff people. And we never seem to have a shortage of willing volunteers, which is impressive and enlightening in itself.

We even got a phone call from the local 211 information and referral service wanted to know more about our suicide line, following Monday’s Renee Mitchell’s column in the Oregonian.  That column described how a woman who could have been suicidal got the runaround from a couple of other local crisis lines.

If she had called our 1-800-Suicide line (which comes up if you Google suicide hotline), she would have gotten instant attention and help, including followup.

As a non-profit that deals with drug and alchohol prevention and treatment referral,  we are proud of the work we do on our crisis lines. People in need find and use us every day, which is another reason to support us in our efforts.


Judy Should Have Called Us!

February 26, 2007

Check out Renee Mitchell’s column in the Oregonian today.  Talked about a woman named Judy who may have been suicidal and got no help at all from a couple of crisis lines she called, including the 211 regional line.  If Judy had called us, she would have gotten a trained crisis worker who would have helped her, complete with followup.  Oregon Partnership’s crisis lines – operating 24-7 – receive some fifteen thousand calls a year.

 We are the only state-wide suicide intervention line in Oregon.  Local agencies know about us, which makes it all the more frustrating this woman wasn’t given our numbers.

 1-800-273-TALK or 1-800-SUICIDE 

The OP CADCA Experience

February 22, 2007

We’re back in the friendly confines of the OP office in balmy Portland, having weathered the snow and ice of Washington D.C. and site of the annual CADCA (Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America) conference. Three thousand people converged on the sprawling Washington Convention Center for five days of workshops, confabs, and speeches by leaders in the field.  And would you believe it?  Those three thousand are all into drug prevention at the community level, just like we are.

This was my first trip to CADCA, and I made two major observations:

1. The sweltering DC Convention Center could save enough energy to heat a small state if it turned down its thermostat.
2. We’re going to hear a whole lot more in the coming months and years about the science of drug and alcohol prevention.  Yeah, it’s about the brain.

Nobody knows that more than NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse) and those folks appear to be on a roll, telling us that in the next decade, there’s going to be huge (as in measurable) progress in tackling addictions, combining treatment medications and behavior therapy.

Oregon Partnership is big on the brain too, knowing that in the crusade on underage drinking, teaching kids about the effects of alcohol on the brain and on their bodies is a preventive tool that gets results.

Put a Spike through Spykes: Take new product off store shelves!

February 21, 2007

spykes1.PNG Packaged in tiny 2-ounce, multi-colored bottles and containing 12 percent alcohol, Spykes is a new malt beverage product by Anheuser-Busch that shouldn’t be sold in Oregon or anywhere else. Spykes mixes malt liquor with ginseng, caffeine and guarana extracts. It comes in four sweet flavors: Spicy Lime, Spicy Mango, Hot Melons and even Hot Chocolate.

Because they are small and easily hidden in a pocket or backpack – and inexpensive at $.99 a bottle – we are asking that if you see them in stores, request that they be taken off the shelves. We are asking our local prevention partners to forward this on to parents and school officials. These products are not recognizable as alcohol and they can easily be hidden in pockets when attending school functions or other youth activities.

We are also encouraging consumers to write letters to Anheuser-Busch in protest. Here is their address:

August A. Busch III, Chair of the Board
Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc.
One Busch Place
St. Louis, MO 63118-1852