Sixty threaten suicide in calls to government social service hotline
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Sixty threaten suicide in calls to government social service hotline

Over 2,000 calls received last week by the Ministry of Welfare and Social Services

Israelis light candles in memory of 57-year old Moshe Silman, who passed away on July 20. Silman set himself on fire during a social protest in Tel Aviv last week, suffering 3rd degree burns all over his body. (photo credit: Miriam Alster/Flash90)
Israelis light candles in memory of 57-year old Moshe Silman, who passed away on July 20. Silman set himself on fire during a social protest in Tel Aviv last week, suffering 3rd degree burns all over his body. (photo credit: Miriam Alster/Flash90)

The Ministry of Welfare and Social Services received around 2,000 calls to its emergency line last week, and from those, around 60 were people who threatened to commit suicide, Ynet News reported on Sunday.

The Ministry said social workers were dispatched in all 60 cases. No deaths were reported.

Of the 2,000 calls, 90 percent were related to lack of housing.

Yadid, a nongovernmental organization that helps families in financial difficulty, reported a 46% increase in calls to its hotline last week. Yadid director Ron Melamed said that he didn’t think the increase was just a passing phase, and expected the call volume to stay high in the coming months.

Last week, in response to Haifa resident Moshe Silman’s July 14 self-immolation at a Tel Aviv social protest rally, the National Insurance Institute and the Ministry of Welfare and Social Affairs announced the creation of a new task force to detect severe cases of personal hardship and provide a framework for intervention if necessary.

Citing his failing financial and housing situation Silman, 57, set fire to himself at a demonstration marking the one-year anniversary of the Israeli social protest movement. He succumbed to his wounds on Friday and his funeral was scheduled for Sunday.

 

 

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