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Some things you just can't make up.
May 26, 2005 2:57 AM   Subscribe

Canadian suicide hotline stops its 24 hour service and adopts a 9-to-5 format. Apparently, people only feel like killing themselves at work. Located via Fark.
posted by deusdiabolus (40 comments total)

 
UpdateFilter: Suicide hotline for Prince Edward Island rethinks the cutback, decides to keep it open at night after all.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 3:13 AM on May 26, 2005


UpdateFilter: Suicide hotline for Prince Edward Island rethinks the cutback, decides to keep it open at night after all.

Welcome to our wishy-washy, cutting whatever is necessary to balance the budget because we've squandered a lot of money on bad business deals government here on P.E.I.
posted by dflemingdotorg at 3:21 AM on May 26, 2005


P.E.I. has a government that makes poor decisions...? wow.. I'm sure glad stuff like that doesn't happen here in the good old u s of a!

oh...wait....never mind.....
posted by HuronBob at 4:07 AM on May 26, 2005


oh...wait....never mind.....

Good point. Hmm.
posted by dflemingdotorg at 4:39 AM on May 26, 2005


oh...wait....never mind.....

Haha... you guys are a riot. It only took three comments to bring this thread right back around to just how much the U.S. sucks. Move.
posted by Witty at 5:02 AM on May 26, 2005


Witty,

Why do you hate America?
posted by Mikey-San at 5:11 AM on May 26, 2005


People like you? ;)
posted by Witty at 5:47 AM on May 26, 2005


What an astonishingly poor FPP and thread.
posted by biffa at 5:55 AM on May 26, 2005


Metafilter surrenders.

Seriously, does anyone even read Fark anymore? I mean, I like drinking beer and looking at boobies too... but I don't need to commiserate about it ten times a day with a bunch of former frat boys.
posted by wfrgms at 6:00 AM on May 26, 2005


wfrgms writes "Seriously, does anyone even read Fark anymore?"

It's a pretty good newsfilter (the idea of a Fark RSS feed seems somewhat... redundant). That being said it's really been shifting to the right wing recently.
posted by clevershark at 6:03 AM on May 26, 2005


Well, to be fair, it was pretty dead around there after about 2 AM.
posted by nofundy at 6:05 AM on May 26, 2005


Well, to be fair, it was pretty dead around there after about 2 AM.

::rimshot::
posted by qwip at 6:14 AM on May 26, 2005


Seriously, does anyone even read Fark anymore?

Eh, after all the erudition and wit of MeFi, the crassness and vulgarity of Fark can be quite refreshing, and vice versa. I imagine there's plenty of crossover between the two sites, despite the juvenile "rivalry," some people like to believe exists between them.
posted by jonmc at 6:34 AM on May 26, 2005


This made me think of this comic, which was much more amusing than the article.
posted by graymouser at 6:36 AM on May 26, 2005


US Army recruiters would be happy to man the phones during those off hours.
Just cause you are from Canada doesn't mean they can't find a way to sneak you in.
posted by Balisong at 6:51 AM on May 26, 2005


clevershark,

I don't think it's that it's shifted so much as they keep posting inflammatory headlines. The same thing would happen to metafilter if it was so blatantly for profit. They just post whatever gets people to keep coming back and flinging poo in the comments.

that said, Fark's pretty good for news, useless for comments.
posted by slapshot57 at 6:55 AM on May 26, 2005


Is it possible that the 9 to 5 decision was simply a publicity ploy to get the public outraged and call for the reinstatement of the full budget? I'm sure the staff at the hotline understands full well the idiocy of maintaining a suicide hotline during business hours only.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:23 AM on May 26, 2005


People like you? ;)

Move.
posted by jperkins at 7:24 AM on May 26, 2005


How much does The Sun pay Fark to get a link every day?
posted by blag at 7:59 AM on May 26, 2005


In a desperate attempt to bring the thread back to the topic....

Maybe 9-to-5 isn't so stupid after all. God knows there are plenty of days when being at the office makes me want to kill myself.

[joke, joke, please don't e-mail me]
posted by GrammarMoses at 8:06 AM on May 26, 2005


slapshot57 writes "I don't think it's that it's shifted so much as they keep posting inflammatory headlines."

When they put up obvious flamebait with a powerline link on the front page last week I thought to myself "that's it with Fark." Mind you the constant influx of Weekly World News links already had me a little skeptical...
posted by clevershark at 8:36 AM on May 26, 2005


wfrgms writes "Seriously, does anyone even read Fark anymore? I mean, I like drinking beer and looking at boobies too... but I don't need to commiserate about it ten times a day with a bunch of former frat boys."

I do, for the same reasons as jonmc. I wish more Metafites would, so we could cut down on the cross pollenization.
posted by Mitheral at 8:48 AM on May 26, 2005


wfrgms : "Seriously, does anyone even read Fark anymore?"

In MetaFilter, Fark comes to you!

/Yakov
posted by graventy at 8:49 AM on May 26, 2005


Apparently, people only feel like killing themselves at work.

That's me, all right.
posted by The Card Cheat at 8:50 AM on May 26, 2005


I stopped even thinking about glancing at Fark after that whole paid ad placement in the links with no notification bullshit.

This is interesting and newsworthy enough for a post here, I think.

The Card Cheat, see I don't feel like killing myself at work, just everyone around me and no, I don't work at the Post Office.
posted by fenriq at 10:53 AM on May 26, 2005


The hotline received about 1,400 calls a year and about 50 were from people contemplating suicide, health groups said.

If they're open year-round, it comes to around 4 calls a day, and one suicide crisis per week. That requires two phonelines. I can run an operation like this from my apartment. Don't tell me they can't manage it.
posted by ori at 11:35 AM on May 26, 2005


If they're open year-round, it comes to around 4 calls a day, and one suicide crisis per week. That requires two phonelines. I can run an operation like this from my apartment. Don't tell me they can't manage it.

You have to put it into context. This is a government that relies on federal transfers as its major source of revenue, outside of very volatile industries; farming, fishing and tourism. To put it bluntly, the money has been drying up in the latter three and the government is pleading for more money from the feds, which they're giving, but not the amount they're looking for. We're poor and we want more, or something to that effect.

Couple that with some major, major bad deals (bailing out a set of 6 fish processing plants that never made money previously, amalgamating them and watching them go under to the tune of 30 million dollars of public money lost) and they're looking to cut millions of dollars from our budget without caring what's going to happen to the services. In the health sector, they've left all front line services, however they're decimating the admin (cutting 500 well paying jobs in a province of 140,000 is going to cause a rather large landslide of economic slowdown) side. For example, in our Income Support (Employment Insurance) department, 24 current managers across the island are being "restructured" into competing for 4 jobs. These managers currently are putting in well over 40 hour weeks (I happen to be related to 2). Do the math. I don't know who I pity more; the people being restructured in or out.

So, they're trying to find any place they can tuck some cuts that won't get them even more public distaste; they didn't find it. We're in a crisis caused by a complacent government and the people of PEI are just WAITING til they get the chance to vote again.
posted by dflemingdotorg at 11:59 AM on May 26, 2005


I'm sure the staff at the hotline understands full well the idiocy of maintaining a suicide hotline during business hours only.
The bulk of calls received on crisis hotlines are not from people in a suicidal crisis. Most come from people looking for information on suicide, from people in some other sort of crisis, or from consistent callers (OCs who use the line as a crutch).

PEI has 137,000 inhabitants. Compare that to the population of US cities that don't have their own hotlines. I've volunteered at crisis centers for over 13 years now and even I would question the cost-effectiveness of maintaining a facility that gets as few calls as this one.

Closing this hotline would not necessarily mean that PEI would not have access to a hotline. I've seen cases where smaller crisis centers would forward their after-hours calls to a larger center. Some state-run mental health facilities would subcontract their after-hours calls to crisis centers. Many calls to crisis centers are forwarded from the police department if they don't have a trained officer who can respond.
posted by joaquim at 12:51 PM on May 26, 2005


dflemingdotorg, that's interesting. I didn't know that was the situation. I am an Israeli expat living in Vancouver, so my news intake divides into 85% Israeli news, 10% Vancouver/BC news and about 5% for Canada. Didn't know the situation in PEI was so dire.
posted by ori at 1:18 PM on May 26, 2005


Man, just put Van Halen's "Jump" on the hold music after 5pm.
posted by klangklangston at 1:24 PM on May 26, 2005


ori not really a question of "managing" it, there is also costs associated with training people, office supplies, phone lines, possible long distance charges, an office to operate this service out of. A lot of crisis lines are largely supported by volunteers so $30,000 is nothing to run something like this (about $5 per person per year) in comparison to the economic loss if such a service didn't exist. Joaquim sure you can farm it out to other locations (been done here) but sometimes proximity to the person in crisis matters, people who are in Vancouver on the hotline with be far more knowledgeable about services in Vancouver than say services available in Kitimat.

Its all screwy anyway, CMHA get millions every year and spends it on lame ass projects like making pamphlets in order to avoid a fiscal claw back of a million dollars the next year. Provincial bureaucrats fly from harbour to harbour in order to do business cause the ferry is "too slow" UGH ... don't get me started on wasteful health care spending.
posted by squeak at 2:41 PM on May 26, 2005


Witty, I have a great bumper sticker for you. I made it months ago, actually.

I am too chicken to put one on my car, though.
posted by beth at 3:22 PM on May 26, 2005


Closing this hotline would not necessarily mean that PEI would not have access to a hotline. I've seen cases where smaller crisis centers would forward their after-hours calls to a larger center. Some state-run mental health facilities would subcontract their after-hours calls to crisis centers. Many calls to crisis centers are forwarded from the police department if they don't have a trained officer who can respond.
posted by joaquim at 12:51 PM PST on May 26 [!]


Outsourse it to India like my Adelphia customer service.
Oh, Wait.. You mean Discourage suicides.
posted by Balisong at 5:58 PM on May 26, 2005


dflemingdotorg writes "This is a government that relies on federal transfers as its major source of revenue, outside of very volatile industries; farming, fishing and tourism."

I've heard rumors to the effect that meth labs have become a non-negligible sector of the PEI economy. Any truth to that?
posted by clevershark at 7:04 PM on May 26, 2005


I've heard rumors to the effect that meth labs have become a non-negligible sector of the PEI economy. Any truth to that?

The moonshine makers are just diversifying.

/wants off this island. Now.
posted by Space Coyote at 7:55 PM on May 26, 2005


Man, just put Van Halen's "Jump" on the hold music after 5pm.

Aztec Camera's cover of the same song. "Suicide is Painless" a.k.a. the M*A*S*H theme. Ozzy's "Suicide Solution." And lots of Morrissey...
posted by kindall at 11:02 PM on May 26, 2005


I know I'm just being silly, but I'd like to think P.E.I. didn't need a suicide hotline, because it's just such a wonderful place everyone would be happy there.

The whole economy thing has hit the whole Maritimes. I don't really understand it all, myself. Halifax seemed to be coming back, but maybe it's just that family farming can't sustain the economy any more. Which is a shame, because P.E.I. shouldn't be just tourists and rich cottagers.
posted by jb at 11:18 PM on May 26, 2005


There are only about 1900 real "farmers" left on the Island.

When you look at the nice old farm houses and countless churches you can see that people used to have it fairly well here, when you were a farmer and you were paid for what your work was worth, but that old-fashioned idea has gone and a couple of giant french fry factories have taken its place.
posted by Space Coyote at 12:28 AM on May 27, 2005


I've heard rumors to the effect that meth labs have become a non-negligible sector of the PEI economy. Any truth to that?

There was a major crackdown on bootlegging; man's gotta make a living!
posted by dflemingdotorg at 6:30 AM on May 27, 2005


Space Coyote - I know, my grandfather left the island because he couldn't get work there. His father's family had farmed there for generations.
posted by jb at 7:43 AM on May 27, 2005


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