[Techtaffy Newsdesk]

Facebook is offering the opportunity for a private chat with a trained crisis representative from the Suicide Prevention Lifeline, in addition to providing the Lifeline’s phone number, for its users who may be feeling suicidal. This is part of a new partnership between the social utility and the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, says Dr. Regina Benjamin,  the 18th Surgeon General of the United States, in a Facebook Safety blog post.

This service will be available to people who use Facebook in the United States and Canada. The new service enables Facebook users to report a suicidal comment they see posted by a friend to Facebook using either the Report Suicidal Content link or the report links found throughout the site.  The person who posted the suicidal comment will then immediately receive an e-mail from Facebook encouraging them to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or to click on a link to begin a confidential chat session with a crisis worker.

Nearly 100 Americans die by suicide every day, and in the past year, more than eight million Americans 18 or older had thought seriously about suicide.