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Coming up on Connections: Tuesday, August 9, 2022

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Donovan Graen/Flickr
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First hour: Discussing the new 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline

Second hour: Journalist Nancy French on empathy and forgiveness

People experiencing mental health emergencies have a new way to access help. 988 is the new national Suicide & Crisis Lifeline. It connects people experiencing mental health crises with trained mental health professionals. The new service is designed to be an alternative to calling 911, which is not set up to address mental health needs. Patients and advocates say 988 may be an effective way to avoid interaction with law enforcement, which sometimes leads to further trauma. This hour, we discuss how 988 will work at the local level, and we hear from mental health advocates about their perspectives related to diversionary services. Our guests:

  • Deborah Turner, program director of the 211/LIFE LINE Program at Goodwill of the Finger Lakes
  • Kristina Mossgraber, COO of NAMI Rochester
  • David Morgenstern, bipolar patient and mental health advocate

Then in our second hour, in a recent piece for the Atlantic, conservative writer David French shared a story about how his wife Nancy handled what she felt was a traumatic moment at a speaking engagement. After her talk about showing empathy and love for people who may be considered "enemies," a man in the audience asked her if she showed love or tolerance for the man who sexually abused her as a child. She left the room to compose herself, but returned to face the audience member, who said he was also a victim of sexual abuse and didn't know how to properly ask his question. The experience made both Nancy and David French reflect on why it's important to be civil and show grace during times of polarization. Nancy French joins us this hour to discuss that and more. Our guest:

  • Nancy French, journalist and author
Evan Dawson is the host of "Connections with Evan Dawson." He joined WXXI in January 2014 after working at 13WHAM-TV, where he served as morning news anchor. He was hired as a reporter for 13WHAM-TV in 2003 before being promoted to anchor in 2007.
Megan Mack is the executive producer of "Connections with Evan Dawson" and live/televised engagement programming.
Emmarae Stein is the production assistant for "Connections with Evan Dawson."