INGATE

From The Sip Trunking Experts

TMCNet:  Social-service help only 3 digits away

[January 21, 2013]

Social-service help only 3 digits away

Jan 21, 2013 (The Columbus Dispatch - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- Dialing only three digits will put most Ohioans in touch with a wide variety of public services.

"Like 411 can get you numbers for businesses and people in the phone book, 211 will connect you to job and family services," said David Weaver, a Westerville psychologist.

Mental-health services are among the many types of assistance that local 211 call centers can direct people to. Weaver said he has used the free, 24-hour service himself and also told patients about it to help them find appropriate agencies.


Call-center operators also can link people with human-services agencies, food and shelter providers, child-care centers, senior-citizen services and natural-disaster relief. People who are looking for volunteer opportunities also can find them through 211.

Operators consult a database of the Ohio Alliance of Information and Referral Systems to connect callers to the proper agency. The Federal Communications Commission approved 211 as a social-service number in 2000, said Marilee Chinnici-Zuercher, the CEO and president of HandsOn Central Ohio, which operates the local 211 call center.

More than 8.6 million Ohio residents now have access. That is about 82 percent of the state's population, Chinnici-Zuercher said.

The state's centers received 1,347,596 calls in 2011, the most-recent year for which data are available, putting Ohio third nationally behind Texas and New York in call volume.

The service relies on local funding, and the model for each organization is different. Chinnici-Zuercher said HandsOn Central Ohio's money comes from a combination of sources, including the city of Columbus, Franklin County Job and Family Services, the county's ADAMH board, the United Way of Central Ohio and various community foundations. The budget for the fiscal year that runs through June 30 is about $1.2 million.

The sour economy increased both the number of people using 211 and the type of services they need, Chinnici-Zuercher said.

"What we're seeing is a profile change in those using 211 in Ohio," she said, with people seeking more information on job and family services.

A key benefit of 211, proponents say, is that it reduces the volume of inappropriate calls to emergency numbers such as 911.

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio exempted cellphone companies from having to provide access to 211, but many have implemented it, including Sprint, Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile.

Callers in areas without a 211 affiliate receive a message that the service is not available in their area, according to the website 211Ohio.net.

jrutecki@dispatch.com ___ (c)2013 The Columbus Dispatch (Columbus, Ohio) Visit The Columbus Dispatch (Columbus, Ohio) at www.dispatch.com Distributed by MCT Information Services

[ Back To SIP Trunking Home's Homepage ]

Loading
Subscribe here for your FREE
SIP TRUNKING enewslettter.

Featured Partner


Featured Whitepapers

SIP Security for the Enterprise
Voice over IP (VoIP) is incorporated into a variety of computer networks, both public and private, and used for everyday transactions and communications among carriers, businesses, government agencies...

Making A Broadband Purchase Decision
Businesses today have many options for broadband connectivity. Clarifying your particular business needs prior to selecting a broadband provider will ensure an optimal match of broadband service to your requirements.

Voice-Optimized Network Delivers Premier Call Experience
Customers equate call quality with business quality. Real-time communication, interpersonal interaction, and the cordial tone of a call center representative can create a positive impression of your business that no email can match.

Featured Case Studies

Business Telecom Expenses Reduced 50%
A small to medium sized company in the midwest was interested in migrating to IP Communications, but in today's economy, they were hesitant to upgrade their communication system due to their perception that the cost would outweigh the benefits.

Multi-State Company Cuts Telecom Costs 50%
A multi-site, multi-state company with extensive monthly long distance fees and toll-free charges did not have adequate broadband for Broadvox SIP Trunking requirements, nor did they have a SIP enabled telephone system.

Discover Leisure Connects Remote Users to its IP-PBX
Discover Leisure is one of the largest resellers of caravans and motor homes in the UK. With 15 branch of?ces all over the country, the company spent a great deal of money every month just on internal phone calls.

Featured eBOOKS

Internet+: The Way Toward Global Unified Communication
Connecting the telephony of the enterprise PBX or Unified Communications (UC) system using SIP trunks instead of conventional telephone lines has been very successful in recent years.

What is SIP Trunking? Edition 2
SIP trunking is becoming more of a focus for service providers. One key issue many service providers face when deploying SIP trunks is NAT, or Network Address Translation, traversal.

What is SIP Trunking? Edition 1
A vast resource for information about all things SIP - including SIP, security, VoIP, SIP trunking and Unified Communications.

Featured Videos

Broadvox VAR Testimonial VAR 1:
Part 1 of the VAR (Value Added Reseller) Partner Program Testimonials for Broadvox...

E-SBCs AS The Demarcation Point:
Ingate's Steve Johnson talks to Erik Linask about the role session border controller plays as the demarcation point at...

Demystifying DPI
How can deep packet inspection protect your SIP traffic as well as your entire network?

Featured Resources

Partner Program Overview:
Over 4,000 VARs, Master Agents, Solution Providers, and Independent IT Professionals trust Broadvox. We offer customized services and solutions to fit seamlessly into any company's business model. And when you partner with Broadvox, every member of our team stands behind you and your customers 100%...

SIP Trunk UC Summit

What's New

Presenting the New Ingate/Intertex Website:
Internet+ is an extended Internet access allowing high quality SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) based real-time person-to-person communication, everywhere and for any application. It applies to both fixed and mobile networks ...

Featured Blogs

Featured Webinars

Secure SIP Trunking:
What You Need to Know

Successfully Deploying Enterprise SIP Trunking:
Tools and Techniques for Overcoming Common Roadblocks

Featured Podcasts

Getting the Most Out of Your SIP Trunks:
Ingate's Steve Johnson and TMC's Erik Linask discuss how best practices forgetting the most out of SIP Trunking services and common pitfalls to avoid.

Featured Datasheets

Ingate SIParator E-SBCs
Adopting SIP is a simple process with the Ingate SIParator, the secure enterprise session border controller (E-SBC). The SIParator makes secure SIP communications - including VoIP,SIP trunking and more - possible while working seamlessly with your existing network firewall.

Ingate Firewalls
Everyone is talking about enterprise usage of VoIP, instant messaging and other types of realtime communications including presence and conferencing.

SIP Trunk Solutions for Service Providers
The award-winning Ingate Firewall and Ingate SIParator deliver a high quality, reliable SIP trunk connection between the customer's IP-PBX and the service provider network, and solve interoperability issues to simplify deployments and support for remote diagnosis of reported issues.