March 17, 2022

Moulton and Colleagues Lead 988 Implementation Act

This legislation introduced today is a critical step forward ahead of the July 2022 launch of the national 9-8-8 mental health emergency hotline


Washington, D.C. Continuing his national leadership on mental health issues, Congressman Seth Moulton today announced that he is co-leading the 988 Implementation Act, which will provide federal support, guidance and funding for states to launch the new 9-8-8 national suicide prevention and mental health crisis hotline this July.  


Congressman Moulton introduced the National Suicide Hotline Designation Act in 2019, which was passed and signed into law the following year. The bill unites the nation’s suicide prevention and mental health hotlines under three digits: 9-8-8. Starting this summer, Americans with questions or concerns about their mental health or the mental health of a loved one will be able to dial 9-8-8 and get free, professional help in real-time.


Today’s 9-8-8 Implementation Act was introduced with Congressman Tony Cárdenas (D-Calif.), Congresswoman Doris Matsui (D-Calif.), Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-Del.), Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Penn.), Congresswoman Grace Napolitano (D-Calif.), Congressman Don Beyer (D-Va.) and Congressman Jamie Raskin (D-Md.)

“The United States is facing a mental health crisis—made worse by two years of pandemic-induced trauma. My bill to make 9-8-8 the national hotline number for mental health emergencies was a critical step toward destigmatizing mental health and making care more accessible,” Congressman Moulton said. “I’m proud to co-lead this effort with Congressman Cardenas to give states the support they need to effectively operationalize 9-8-8. We’re long overdue to provide this service to Americans looking for a reliable, free place to turn during mental health emergencies.” 

In 2020, Moulton and his House and Senate partners built a bipartisan coalition that steered the bill across the finish line after Moulton disclosed he was managing post-traumatic stress from his service in the military. At the time, he outlined a three-pronged plan to expand access to mental health care and break the stigmas that prevent people from seeking help. 


Congressman Moulton also recently introduced new legislation that would destigmatize the use of medical marijuana by U.S. veterans coping with mental health issues and chronic pain.