March 30, 2016
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) will hold a public consultation on next-generation 9-1-1 (NG9-1-1) emergency services. NG 9-1-1 is a term used to describe more technologically advanced 9-1-1 services. Telecommunications networks, it said, are evolving and now offer much more than just voice services.
“As such, the CRTC wants to ensure that 9-1-1 services benefit from these technological advancements as well,” the organization said in a release. “Through NG9-1-1, people who need emergency assistance may be able to not only dial 9-1-1 on their phones to call for help; they may also be able to send text messages, photos and videos to 9-1-1 operators. This will enable emergency responders to find new ways to ensure the safety of Canadians.
The CRTC is consulting on matters such as what services should be offered, who will play a role in offering these services and how these services should be paid for.
A hearing will be held in Gatineau, Que., starting Jan. 16, 2017, and is expected to run for five days. Canadians have until May 20 to send comments and to request to appear at the public hearing.
“The CRTC is committed to ensuring that Canadians have access to 9-1-1 services through a reliable and modern communication system,” said Jean-Pierre Blais, its chairman and CEO. “Although our organization is just one of many stakeholders working together to enhance 9-1-1, we look forward to playing our part by establishing a regulatory framework for NG9-1-1. The public hearing we are announcing today is an important step in that process.”