The Deaf and Disabled Telecommunications Program (DDTP) is a public purpose program mandated by the California State Legislature and administered by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). The DDTP has two components: the California Relay Service (CRS), which includes Speech to Speech, and the California Connect Program, which provides assistive communications equipment. The mission of the program is to provide access to basic communications service for Californians who have difficulty using the telephone.
Programs are funded by a nominal surcharge on all wireline, wireless (postpaid and prepaid), and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services in the state. This surcharge appears on bills as “CA Relay Service and Communications Devices Fund.”
DDTP offices are located at the following address:
DDTP Main Office
1 Kaiser Plaza, Suite 1101
Oakland, CA 94612
Hours of Operation:
9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday except Holidays.
In compliance with Public Utilities Code § 2881, the Commission has implemented two telecommunications programs (CRS and California Connect) for California residents who are deaf, hard of hearing, and/or disabled. These two programs are collectively known as the Deaf and Disabled Telecommunications Program (DDTP).
In 1979, legislation was enacted requiring the CPUC to design and implement a program to provide telecommunication devices for the deaf or hard of hearing. This program, now called the Deaf and Disabled Telecommunications Program (DDTP), fulfills four mandated functions:
- In 1979, Senate Bill 597 (SB 597) provided for the distribution of telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDDs) to certified deaf or hard of hearing users.
- In 1983, Senate Bill 244 (SB 244) mandated the development of a dual party relay system to connect individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing with individuals with no hearing disability. The resulting California Relay Service (CRS) provides Teletypewriter (TTY) users 24-hour contact with any other telephone user.
- In 1985, Senate Bill 60 (SB 60) mandated the distribution of specialized telecommunications equipment to other certified individuals with hearing, vision, speech, and mobility disabilities.
- In 2003, Senate Bill 168 (SB 168) changed Public Utilities (P.U.) Code Section 279a enabling the CPUC to transfer advisory oversight of the TTY Placement Program (TPP) to the DDTP and its advisory committees.
- The CPUC established a formal structure for the DDTP in 1989 to oversee the operations of the mandated programs, encompassing both the California Telephone Access Program (CTAP), which distributes equipment, and CRS, which provides operators to relay telephone conversations to those who are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech-disabled.
The California Communications Access Foundation (CCAF) is the CPUC primary program and contract administrator for the DDTP. You may contact them at: email@example.com.