FACT CHECK: Will Texting 45645 Between 5 p.m. and 1 a.m. Connect You With a Crisis Worker?
MOSTLY TRUE. Texting the number will put you in touch with someone from the Canadian Suicide Prevention Service—not the LifeLine Canada Foundation—which has crisis workers available between 4 p.m. and 12 a.m. ET.
A public post by a Facebook user, shared more than 85,000 times, says that an individual experiencing depression or suicidal thoughts can “text 45645 from 5 pm-1am in Canada” to speak with a crisis worker. A link included in the post leads to the Lifeline Canada Foundation’s website, an iteration of Lifeline Foundations worldwide.
The information contained in this post is mostly true. Canadians in crisis can text any message to 45645 to receive a reply from a crisis worker who is ready to talk. But the worker won’t be a volunteer from the Lifeline Canada Foundation, as the link included in the post suggests. The number 45645 is actually associated with the Canadian Suicide Prevention Service (CSPS), a separate organization.
The CSPS is a subset of the Canadian Crisis Services, whose main focus is to provide Canada-wide phone services to individuals who are thinking about, or who have been affected by, suicide. Since they are based in Toronto, their texting services are provided between the hours of 4 p.m. and 12 a.m. ET. Sending a text to that number between the hours of 5 p.m. and 1 a.m. would get you a response if you were in a province or territory that operates in a central time zone: Manitoba, Saskatchewan, or parts of Nunavut.
Here is a list of crisis hotlines and resources within each province and territory if you or someone you know needs support.