Service Terms & Conditions

Terms and Conditions for the use of the
Distress Centre of Ottawa and Region (DCOR) services

Please read the following statement before using our voice, chat and text services. By using our services, you agree to the terms described below. If you don’t agree to the terms, you may be prohibited from using these services.

Nature of Our Services
Our voice, chat and text services do not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any conditions.
Your participation in our services:

  • Does not constitute mental health care or treatment
  • Does not constitute a therapist-patient relationship
  • Does not constitute any other sort of confidential relationship


Purpose of Services
The purpose of our voice, chat and text services is to provide immediate, accessible, short-term assistance to anyone needing it. It aims to help people in distress or crisis, whatever that crisis may be, find immediate relief from emotional distress, explore and develop coping strategies for the current issue or crisis, safely manage any immediate next steps or threats to life or safety, provide suggestions for resources/information, and consider next steps the caller can take after the conversation. Our services seek to achieve this by engaging with the service user in an empathetic, collaborative and non-judgmental manner.

Caller Etiquette
It is expected that all individuals using our voice, chat and text services will use respectful language at all times. Failure to do so may result in the interaction being discontinued.

It is expected that all clients using our voice, chat and text services respect the limits and boundaries set by our Responders. Failure to do so may result in the interaction being discontinued.
We ask that you stay focused on the conversation and avoid multi-tasking during your conversation.

We reserve the right to block inappropriate or abusive service users.

Service Perimeters
The voice, chat and text services are delivered by a team of experienced, trained Responders. Please note that our Responders are able to provide services in English and French at this point in time.

The voice, chat and text services are provided on an ‘as is' basis and ‘as available' basis. We expressly disclaim all warranties of any kind, whether expressed or implied, and make no warranty that we will:

a) Meet your requirements;
b) Be uninterrupted, timely, confidential, secure, or error-free;
c) Meet your expectations.

Although we wish we could help everyone, we can only respond to those of you who live in the areas served by DCOR.

Currently our voice service operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year while our chat and text service is available from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.

Our employees, Responders or agents are not responsible for any decisions, or results of the decisions that you make while, as a result of, or after participating in our voice, chat and text services. This includes whether you choose to seek or not seek professional care, or to modify or terminate specific treatment that you are currently receiving based on the information provided by our services. You assume all risk for use of our services.

Our employees, Responders or agents have no liability for actions taken by you or a third party, or not taken by you or a third party, and you agree to indemnify us and hold us harmless for damages arising out of information provided through our services. Without limiting the foregoing, in no event shall we be liable for any special, incidental, consequential, or indirect damages.

Your personal information is kept confidential. We will not share your information with any other organization without your express permission, except where we are required to do so by law. This may apply in circumstances where there is a life threatening situation or a child protection concern. Note that de-identified reports may be used for the purpose of supervision, training, reporting and evaluation.

Privacy and Security
We take your privacy and security very seriously. Security controls, including encryption and authentication, are in place to ensure the protection of your information. Any information provided by you or collected about you, will not be shared or disclosed with any third party. We do, however, reserve the right to disclose personal information to the authorities at our sole discretion and as required by law.

Despite these protections, the internet remains an imperfectly secure environment, and we cannot guarantee protection from intruders or interceptors. You agree to use this service and submit information at your own risk. You agree that we have no liability regarding unauthorized access to this service by a third party.

Modification of the Terms and Conditions
These terms and conditions may be modified from time-to-time. Any changes will be effective immediately upon posting.
If you have questions about the terms and conditions described on this page, you can call our office phone line at 613-238-1089 (ext. 224) or you can contact our office by e-mail at

Again, thank you for using our voice, chat and text services.

A copy of this policy is available upon request.

Written: May 27, 2021
Reviewed: September 24, 2021