Terms and Conditions for use of the Distress Centre Durham Helpline Service:

USE OF THIS SERVICE IS BOUND BY THESE TERMS AND CONDITIONS. Thank you for visiting our website to learn more about our helpline service.

PLEASE NOTE: our online and text service has a separate set of TERMS AND CONDITIONS that can be viewed when you click on the ONTX icon on our website.

Please read the following statement before using our helpline service. By using our service, you agree to the terms described below. If you don’t agree to the terms, you may be prohibited from using this service.

Nature of this Service

Our helpline service does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment of any conditions.

Your participation in our helpline service:

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


Service Purpose

The purpose of our helpline service is to provide immediate, accessible, short-term help 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 to follow-up on after the conversation. Our services seeks to achieve these aims by supportively engaging with the caller in an empathetic, collaborative, and non-judgemental way.

Caller Etiquette

It is expected that all callers using our helpline will use respectful language at all times. Failure to do so may result in the conversation being discontinued.

It is expected that all callers using our helpline service respect the limits and boundaries engaged by our responders.  Failure to do so may result in the conversation 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 callers.

Service Perimeters

The helpline service is being delivered by a team of experienced, trained responders. Please note that our responders are only able to provide service in English at this point in time.

The helpline service is 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 Durham Region.

Currently our helpline is available 7 days a week, 24 hours per day.


Any of our employees, volunteers 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 helpline service. 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 this service. You assume all risk for use of this service.

Any of our employees, volunteer 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 this service. 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 on 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

This statement may be modified from time-to-time. Any changes will be effective immediately upon posting. Each time you access this service you will be presented with the current terms, conditions and privacy statement for acceptance. You must agree to the modified terms to use this service.

If you have questions about anything on this page, you can contact us here contact our Administration Office:  905 430 – 3511

Again, thank you for using our helpline service.