Small Talk Saves Lives Campaign

The rail industry is working in partnership with Samaritans and the British Transport Police on the Small Talk Saves Lives bystander campaign, launched in November 2017. The first campaign of its type on the railway, it encourages the general public to support those who may be in emotional crisis around them on the railway network.

The campaign aims to give commuters the confidence to trust their own instincts and intervene if they see someone vulnerable who may be at risk of suicide on or around the rail network, and to talk to them to interrupt their suicidal thoughts.

Lifesaving questions

Four ‘lifesaving questions’, successfully used by rail employees who have approached someone vulnerable on the railway, are at the centre of the campaign.

Small Talk Saves Lives encourages passengers to notice what may be warning signs, such as someone standing alone and isolated, looking distant or withdrawn, staying on the platform a long time without boarding a train or displaying something out of the ordinary in their behaviour or appearance.

The campaign had three phases with both phase one and three utilising a film to accompany the campaign’s message. The first of which was ‘Sarah’s story’ which accompanied phase one and the second being ‘Everyday small talk’ which accompanied phase three.

Supporting you

Whatever you’re facing, Samaritans are there to listen – day or night. Call them free on 116 123, or visit
(*this number is FREE to call) samaritans