Last updated: April 8, 2022
First posted: March 16th, 2020
NCF was founded to connect our community and we understand that access to the Internet, while always crucial, is especially important now as a connection to family, friends and work, as well as critical news and health information.
At this time, we are taking the following steps to protect the health and safety of NCF members, staff, volunteers and our suppliers, while also ensuring a continued high quality of service.
The latest updates to NCF’s COVID-19 response will be posted on this page.
1) Response to Omicron BA.1 and BA.2: By appointment only, Monday - Saturday 10am-5pm
To ensure that staff and members are as safe as possible while case counts are rising and with the increased transmissibility of the Omicron variants, we ask that members use our remote HelpDesk support whenever possible. If it is necessary to come in, we ask members to make an appointment and request members wear a mask while in the office.
Only one member group can be served in the office at one time, we have socially distanced seating available in the hallway.
2) Symptom monitoring, masks and hand sanitizer
All staff working in the office monitor their health and don't come in to the office if showing two or more symptoms associated with COVID-19. We also ask members to check their own symptoms: we have information posters at all entrances. If you have any symptoms, please do not come to the office.
Staff wear KN-95 masks while in the office and we also have disposable three-ply surgical masks available to members who require them.
3) Office hours and remote work
The office is currently open by appointment Monday to Saturday 10am-5pm. The HelpDesk is also available remotely Monday to Friday 10am-7pm and Saturdays and Sundays from 10am-5pm. Please contact the HelpDesk at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 613-721-1773 ext. 0. We remain very busy and ask for your patience at this time. We always prioritize members who are out of service but are getting through all our tickets as quickly as possible.
4) Modem testing and loaner modems: drop-off and delivery
We have extended the period for all our loaner modems from two weeks to a month. If you have a loaner modem that you wish to buy, please arrange payment with the HelpDesk.
If you need to drop-off your modem for testing or configuration, please make an appointment to come to the office or you can drop it off in the lockbox in the lobby stairwell of our offices at 1305 Richmond Road. It will be checked and emptied regularly, Monday to Friday.
If you drop off a modem to be tested or reconfigured before 1pm, it should be ready for pick-up by appointment by 4pm the same day.
If you are not able to drop off your modem or can drop it off but not pick it up, we can ship it using using Canada Post Expedited delivery, which takes 1-3 business days. Shipping is $15. We will send the tracking information, but cannot guarantee delivery timing.
If you wish to purchase a new modem at this time, you can pick it up during office hours or we can ship it to you.
5) Payment options
We accept cash, cheque, debit, and credit card payments at the office. We continue to accept VISA and Mastercard credit and debit, e-transfers, cheques, money orders and pre-authorized debit as remote payment options. There are more details here: help.ncf.ca/Payments_and_Donations
6) Unlimited usage
We're happy to say we have offered our members unlimited bandwidth since 2017, ensuring no one feels they need to limit their internet usage or risk being charged for overages.
7) Continued investment in our network
It has always been a priority for NCF to ensure there is no congestion on our network and as such, we have invested in bandwidth that supports members’ collective usage during peak periods. We are watching network usage daily and anticipate there may be increased usage or a shift in the times of day people are online. Please know we will increase our bandwidth as necessary. If you wish to troubleshoot your current speed or upgrade to a higher speed, please contact the HelpDesk at email@example.com or call 613-721-1773 ext. 0.
8) Digital literacy work
We have a number of digital literacy workshops in the pipeline but have decided to postpone all workshops and other public events for the time being.
We are also looking into ways to ensure that our past and future public education work can be shared online from now on, whether it’s access to a video stream of a workshop or handbooks and worksheets.
Please take care and feel free to contact us if you have any questions.