Brian SilverstoneFebruary 18, 2021

NG911 for Canadian PSAPs: Creating a Transition Roadmap with Avaya

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In a rapidly digitizing world, traditional 9-1-1 infrastructure presents a clear and present danger. People expect emergency services to locate them precisely, support seamless communication across commonly used digital channels (not just voice), and intelligently coordinate to rapidly deploy help. Next-generation 9-1-1 (NG9-1-1) is the next logical step for emergency communication centers like public safety answering points (PSAPs) to connect citizens with emergency response services using the best available tools and information. Response time can be accelerated with rapid data sharing through system interoperability, citizens and responders are kept safer with improved situational awareness (down to building floor or room), and call processing times are improved with better management of call overload and emergency call transfers. NG9-1-1 is also adapting to the fact that more calls are now made to 9-1-1 through mobile phones than traditional landlines (nearly 80% to be exact).

Canadian PSAPs now have until March of 2024 to successfully make this move per the CRTC’s NG911 timeline, and they need to start preparing now.

How Avaya is Best Positioned to Help

Starting June 2021 through the next three years, Canadian PSAPs must get everything set up, integrated, tested, and operationalized so that when the time comes to officially make the move, they can seamlessly do so without any loss of life. The Canadian NG9-1-1 Coalition recommends that PSAPS are migrated off of legacy systems, maintaining strategic technology plans, and actively adopting emerging technologies by March of 2024.

Avaya has long been involved with Canada’s Emergency Services Working Group (ESWG), working with telecom service providers, PSAPs, and 9-1-1 industry specialists in addressing the issues that relate to the provisioning of 9-1-1 services and the operational and technical aspects of NG9-1-1. We have a rich history here and dominance in the market stemming decades.

Outside of being an active contributor behind the scenes, we’re also front and center with a best-of-breed public safety solution that combines two high power players: Avaya and Komutel, who has been a long-time member of the Avaya DevConnect ecosystem.

This NG9-1-1 partnership is arguably the industry’s strongest. Avaya is an undisputed leader in next-generation contact center and collaboration solutions. We’re known for providing highly resilient communications for mission-critical operations in essential industries like public safety, government, and healthcare. Meanwhile, Komutel is a recognized and respected leader in 9-1-1 solutions, providing fit-for-purpose 9-1-1 solutions that address the call taker and dispatcher desktop (9-1-1 and non-911), voice logging, radio, and CAD integration, 9-1-1 reporting, unanswered call management, interface to the 9-1-1 network, and automation for industry-specific workflows. Komutel has designed its solutions specifically for the Canadian market, rather than adopting them from other markets.

Canadian PSAPs can leverage this integrated platform architecture to address a variety of use cases including NG9-1-1 for emergency response, non-emergency omnichannel communications for citizen engagement, and unified communications for admin functions and a mobile workforce - all at a lower cost and TCO. The system is also highly agile in design, ensuring PSAPs can grow to meet new operational requirements as they evolve through various stages of digital transformation.

How Canadian PSAPs are Leveraging Avaya

Together, Avaya and Komutel are achieving some of the greatest milestones in Canada’s NG9-1-1 transition and serving the largest number of Canadian PSAPs:

  • In July 2020, the Ontario Provincial Police conducted the first NG9-1-1 test call transfer in Canada using a commercially available, off-the-shelf solution, enabled by Avaya. The call originated from the Bell Canada Emergency Services IP network to the OPP General Headquarters in Orillia, where it was transferred across the new network to a PSAP in Quebec. This represents a huge milestone in the evolution of NG911 in Canada.
  • Before this in October 2019, we conducted the first NG9-1-1 emergency test call in Canada in 2019. During a test conducted with Bell Canada, the Komutel-Avaya NG9-1-1 call handling architecture successfully received an NG9-1-1 test call from the Bell 9-1-1 ESInet network.
  • Earlier this year, the Ontario Ministry of Health, a multi-sited and industry-leading PSAP  organization for ambulance dispatch communications selected Avaya and Komutel through a competitive Request for Bid process.  The Ministry will be provided with best-in-class NG9-1-1 CHFE (Call Handling Functional Element), in support of their upcoming migration to NG9-1-1 with Avaya partner Combat Networks.

There’s only so long this transition can be put off. Avaya is fully committed to making our clients transition to NG9-1-1 as tailored as possible to their specific needs while minimizing risks and disruptions. Learn more about Avaya’s NG9-1-1 solutions for Canada.

NG911 for Canadian PSAPs: Creating a Transition Roadmap with Avaya

Brian Silverstone

Brian Silverstone is Vice-President of Sales for Avaya responsible for the Canadian Federal Government, Eastern Ontario, the Atlantic provinces and Public Safety across Canada. Brian is a success-oriented, business and customer driven professional with 25+ years’ experience in sales, business development, product line management and marketing, first with Nortel and then with Avaya. Brian resides in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada with his wife and two teenage daughters.

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