SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A support system is available to help the Illinois farming community.
“The farmer mental health initiative is incredibly important,” said Krista Lisser, public information officer at Illinois Department of Agriculture, at the Conservation Cropping Seminar.
“The phone number is 833-FARM-SOS. That is for anyone in Illinois in the agriculture industry or who lives in rural Illinois, whether they are a youth or an adult. Any age can call this number for mental health resources. The line is free and it can lead you to free telehealth services.”
Farmers are among the most likely to die by suicide, compared with other occupations, according to a 2022 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The study also found that suicide rates overall had grown by 40% in less than two decades.
In addition to the 24-hour helpline, farmers can access free webinars, blogs and training on psychological signs of stress at the siumed.org/farm.