Friday, August 20, 2010

When Crisis Calls: NYPL develops a policy on callers who threaten suicide

By Matthew J. Boylan for American Libraries

A telephone keypad can be a lifesaver.

I recently answered a call on ASK NYPL, the New York Public Library’s telephonic and electronic reference line, from the New York City Police Department. A 16-year-old girl was threatening to throw herself off the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge that links Brooklyn to Staten Island, and the only identification that she had in her effects was an NYPL library card — with its barcode on the back that could provide her identity, home address, and contact information for her parents...

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