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People wait in line to enter the Covid-19 drive-thru testing site at the Duke Energy for the Arts Mahaffey Theater on July 8, 2020 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Octavio Jones/Getty Images)
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State Hotline Offers Free Counseling For People Feeling Stress From Pandemic

People wait in line to enter the Covid-19 drive-thru testing site at the Duke Energy for the Arts Mahaffey Theater on July 8, 2020 in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Octavio Jones/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The Utah Strong Recovery Project has put a team of 40 counselors on standby to answer hotline calls from people who are experiencing stress, anxiety or depression because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Callers can get emotional support, crisis counseling and other services. The calls are free of charge.

The team of professionals has already helped more than 150 callers through its initial targeted outreach, a news release said.

With more counselors now on board, the services are available to all Utahns who need help coping with any stress related to COVID-19., according to the release.

“Most of us have never experienced a pandemic, or such a shift in our everyday way of life,” said Robert Snarr, the state’s grant administrator for the Recovery Project.

“It is normal to feel stress at a time when you may be experiencing isolation, economic hardship, health worries, or the loss of a loved one. We want to talk through those feelings and provide you with professionally-led guidance on how you can cope with the changes in your world in a healthy, mentally strong way,” Snarr said.

To talk to a Utah Strong Recovery Project counselor seven days a week 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., call/text 385-386-2289 or email your first name and phone number to UtahStrong@utah.gov. After hours if you need an immediate response, please contact the Utah statewide Crisis Line at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or the SAMHSA Distress Hotline at 1-800-985-5990. Video chat and counseling in Spanish and other languages are available.

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