Suicide prevention workers to return to face-to-face interaction

Record Staff
Suicide prevention workers to return to face-to-face interaction
Tania Boilar, the Executive Director of JEVI, and Yan Perreault, the president of the organization’s board of directors, at a press conference announcing changes to their services in the fall of 2021 (Photo : PhoRecord Archives/Gordon Lambie)

On the eve of Quebec’s 32nd annual suicide prevention week, Sherbrooke’s suicide prevention centre, JEVI, announced that it will not be restarting the telephone help line it put on hold last fall.

According to Yan Perreault, President of JEVI’s board of directors, the decision was made in part because of the fact that telephone support services are now provided through the regional healthcare establishment, the CIUSSS de l’Estrie – CHUS.

“We are taking advantage of this situation to improve the support we can offer to the population by redeploying our services according to best practices in suicide prevention, especially in the context of a pandemic.” He said. “From now on, we will rely more on in-person, face-to-face interventions; a proven way of doing things.”

“Best practices in suicide prevention show that face-to-face interventions are more effective than telephone interventions,” said Tania Boilar, the organization’s executive director, in a press release issued on Thursday. “Practitioners can work more in-depth with clients on the multiple causes of their distress, and the gains remain much longer. For JEVI, in the current context, telephone interventions were no longer the best strategy to help people with suicidal thoughts.”
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