9-8-8 Mental Health Line availability

As of July 16, 2022, people in the United States will be able to call 988 to reach mental health crisis and suicide prevention services.

The “988” number has not been fully implemented yet in Canada.

However, the Canada Suicide Prevention Service (CSPS) can be reached at 1-833-456-4566 for voice calls at any time, or by texting 45645 from 4pm to midnight Eastern Time.

Should customers dial 988, perhaps having seen the U.S. publicity, Incentre does two things.

  • First Incentre plays a short message as mandated for this purpose by the CRTC. That message explains that 988 has not been implemented in Canada but that the CSPS number is available.
  • Second, since callers hearing that message may well require immediate care, Incentre then forwards such calls to the CSPS. Other services are available in Canada for mental health and suicide prevention services, but Incentre forwards all 988 calls to the CSPS because the CRTC specifically requires us to provide their phone number in our message.


We want to make sure that you are aware of important differences in the way 9-1-1 service operates with a VoIP phone when compared with traditional telephone service. Here’s what you need to keep in mind:

Differences between traditional 9-1-1 service and VoIP phone 9-1-1

With traditional phone services, your 9-1-1 call is sent directly to the nearest emergency response centre. With VoIP phone service, your 9-1-1 call is forwarded to a third-party service provider that will automatically or manually route your call to the emergency response centre.

Remember to provide your location

Because you can move your VoIP phone between locations and because, for technical reasons, the emergency operator may not have your name, location or contact information available, you must immediately inform the emergency operator of your location and contact particulars any time you call 9-1-1. Do not risk sending police or ambulance services to the wrong location.

Be prepared during any service interruption

VoIP phone service depends not only on your continued subscription (and payment) for the service, but also on Internet connectivity and power to function. In the event of power, network, or Internet outages (including congestion), or if your service is disconnected or suspended due to non-payment, you may experience a failure, disruption or delay in your 9-1-1 service. We recommend that you keep an alternative phone service (such as a cellular telephone) handy to increase the reliability of your access to emergency services during any service interruption.

Do not disconnect

Until you are told to do so by an emergency dispatcher, do not disconnect your 9-1-1 call. If you are inadvertently disconnected, call back immediately.

Keep your service address up to date

The Internet Centre will attempt to provide the emergency operator with your service address, so please ensure that your information on file with us is always accurate and updated. If you do not do this (for example, if you are unable to speak during a 9-1-1 call), the emergency operator may assume that you are calling from the last registered address.

Inform other users

You must notify members of your household and other potential users of your VoIP phone service of the nature and limitations of 9-1-1 emergency calls. To make this easier, attach the included stickers in a visible location on your telephone sets.

Limitations of liability

The Internet Centre’s terms of service limit and disclaim liability related to VoIP 9-1-1 service. By accepting the terms outlined herein, you acknowledge and understand that The Internet Centre’s telephone service (the Service) does NOT support traditional 9-1-1 access to emergency services. Please read carefully.

The Service is provided through a technology called VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol. The nature of VoIP telephone calls, while appearing similar to traditional telephone calling services, create unique limitations and circumstances, and you acknowledge and agree that differences exist between traditional telephone service and VoIP telephone services, including the lack of traditional 9-1-1 emergency services.

You agree to notify all residents, guests and other persons that may be present at the location from which the Service is available on the nature and limitations of 9-1-1 emergency calls on the Service as described herein.

When an Internet Centre subscriber or user dials 9-1-1, the call is routed to a third-party call centre which will then transfer the call to the local emergency service corresponding to your address of record on your account. The Internet Centre relies on third party services for the forwarding of information underlying such routing. This call centre is different from the centre that would answer a traditional 9-1-1 call which has automatically generated your address information, and consequently, you may be required to provide your name, address, and telephone number to the call centre.

You must not disconnect the 9-1-1 emergency call until told to do so by the dispatcher, as the dispatcher may not have your number or contact information. If you are inadvertently disconnected, you must call back immediately.

The Service will attempt to automatically provide the 9-1-1 dispatcher or emergency service operator with the name, address and telephone number associated with your account. For technical reasons, the dispatcher receiving the call may not be able to capture or retain your name, phone number or physical location. Therefore, when making a 9-1-1 emergency call, you must immediately inform the dispatcher of your location (or the location of the emergency, if different). If you are unable to speak, the dispatcher may not be able to locate you if your location information is not up to date.

You authorize The Internet Centre to disclose your name and address to third-parties involved in providing 9-1-1 dialing including, without limitation, call routers, call centres and local emergency centers.

For each phone line that you utilize with the Service, you must register with The Internet Centre the physical location where you will be using the Service with that phone line. Your initial location will be registered as a part of activation of the Service. It is your responsibility to confirm the accuracy of your physical address via your online account if you have any changes, additions or transfers of phone numbers. When you move the Equipment to another location, you must update the location of the Equipment. If you do not update the location, or do not correctly identify the actual location where you are located, 9-1-1 calls may be misdirected to an incorrect emergency site. You may update a location by logging onto your online account at portal.incentre.net. For purposes of 9-1-1 dialing, you may only register one location at a time for each phone line.

For technical reasons, including network congestion, it is possible that a 9-1-1 emergency call will produce a busy signal or will take longer to connect when compared with traditional 9-1-1 calls.

You acknowledge that there may be a greater possibility of network congestion and/or reduced speed in the routing of a 9-1-1 call made utilizing the Service as compared to traditional 9-1-1 dialing over traditional public telephone networks. You acknowledge and understand that ALL Service, including the 9-1-1 service will not be available in the event of power failure, disruption or loss of your Internet connection for any reason. Power failure or disruption may require that you reset or reconfigure the Equipment in order to re-establish the Service and the availability of the 9-1-1 service.

You acknowledge and understand that a service outage for ANY reason will terminate the availability of ALL Service, including 9-1-1 service.

You acknowledge and understand that suspension or termination of the Service or your Internet connection for any reason, including for billing or non-payment of charges payable, will terminate the availability of ALL Service, including 9-1-1 service.

Neither The Internet Centre, its affiliates or any of their respective officers, directors, employees, or agents may be held liable for (i) any claim, damage, or loss (including but not limited to profit loss), or (ii) any damage as a result of service outage, data loss. The Customer hereby waives any and all such claims or causes of action, arising from or relating to any service outage and/or inability to dial 911 from his Customer phone line or to access emergency service personnel unless it is proven that the act or omission proximately causing the claim, damage, or loss constitutes gross negligence, recklessness, or intentional misconduct on the part of The Internet Centre. Subject to the provisions of this agreement, The Internet Centre does not provide any other warranties of any kind either express or implied, including without limitation the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose.

The Customer agrees to defend, indemnify, and hold harmless The Internet Centre, its affiliates, and their respective officers, directors, employees, agents, legal representatives and any other service provider that offers services to the Customer or The Internet Centre in relation with the present agreement or the service provided, from any and all claims, losses, damages, fines, penalties, costs, expenses, legal fees, etc., by, or on behalf of, the Customer, any third party or user of the Customers’ service relating to the absence, failure or outage of the service, including 911 dialing and/or inability of the Customer or any third party or user of their service to be able to dial 911 or to have access to emergency service personnel, as well as any misroutes of 911 calls.

For a complete description of our VoIP 9-1-1 service, please see The Internet Centre’s terms of service at www.incentre.net

To share information on 911 Limitations, download this PDF to print ten labels using Avery label products 5973 or 6477.