We are entering a new phase of how we access 9-1-1 services in Canada. The current system – a traditional phone call to 9-1-1 to request police, fire or ambulance response – has been in place for decades.
Telecommunications networks have greatly evolved over the years. Today, you can do much more than make a phone call. You can also send texts, videos and photos. E-Comm and all Public Safety Answer Points in Canada are preparing to make sure emergency services benefit from these advancements under what’s called Next Generation 9-1-1 (NG9-1-1).
Eventually, Canadians could send a video of a vehicle crash, as well as make medical information available to first responders. This will lead to safer, faster and more informed emergency responses.
In March 2023, the Province of BC contributed $90 million to E-Comm, to support the federally-mandated implementation of NG9-1-1 technology improvements. The program will move 9-1-1 voice calls to a new digital, IP-based network which is to be completed by March 1, 2025. This one-time funding to support the initial implementation of NG9-1-1 represents a significant avoided cost for our local government and agency partners, and E-Comm is pleased to have played a leadership role in working with the Province and local governments to help enable it.
E-Comm continues to work with governments at all levels, partner agencies, and a national committee of Canadian emergency call-taking agencies to make sure we have the necessary technology, tools, and operational funding in place to be ready for this change.
Find out more about NG9-1-1.