Government partners with carriers to send Canadians abroad key COVID-19 text messages

The messages include contact information for Global Affairs Canada consular support

An image of the Canadian flag blowing in the wind against a backdrop of clouds

The federal government has partnered with the telecom industry to ensure that Canadians abroad receive text messages about key information during the COVID-19 outbreak.

A number of telecom companies have agreed to the government’s request to send text messages containing contact information for Global Affairs Canada consular support to devices that belong to Canadians abroad.

Starting March 18th, Rogers, Bell, Telus, Vidéotron, Freedom Mobile, Eastlink and SaskTel will be sending their customers that are currently living or travelling abroad text messages that include consular support information and key contact information.

This comes after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been urging Canadians abroad to come home amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The measure announced today builds on various steps already taken by Canada’s telecommunications service providers to help consumers and ensure service remains uninterrupted,” said Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains in a press release.

The government says that Canada’s telecommunications system remains strong and is prepared to handle increased demand during these times.

“I am pleased that the measures announced today will contribute to the Government of Canada’s ongoing efforts to assist Canadians abroad during this difficult and critical period,” said Minister of Foreign Affairs François-Philippe Champagne in a press release.

The government says that it also recognizes that telecommunications providers, including field workers who repair networks and staff at stores repairing phones, are providing essential services to Canadians.