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Relay Texas Overview



What is Relay Texas?

Relay Texas provides telephone interpreting service between individuals who can hear and those who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, deaf-blind or speech-disabled. Relay Texas agents have equipment that enables them to hear a speaking caller and also read the text sent by a text telephone (TTY) user.

This service is available for Texans 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. There are no restrictions imposed on Relay Texas calls. Texas and United States laws ensure confidentiality for relay users and operators.

The Public Utility Commission (PUC) is legally mandated with the oversight of Relay Texas. The PUC's Relay Texas administrator works to ensure that the needs of individuals and businesses are communicated to, and adequately addressed by the Commission and Sprint, Texas' relay service provider.

How does Relay Texas Work?

Either a TTY user or a person using a standard phone may initiate a call through Relay Texas by dialing the relay number 711 or the designated 10 digit number. After dialing Relay Texas, the person initiating the call gives the desired phone number to the Relay Texas Agent, who then dials that number using another phone line. The Relay Agent types the standard phone user's spoken words to the person using the TTY and voices the TTY user's text.

How is Relay Texas Funded?

The Texas Universal Service Fund (TUSF) provides funding for Relay Texas. These costs represent less than five percent of the entire TUSF. For more information on the Texas Universal Service Fund, visit the following link: Texas Universal Service Fund

Relay History

In 1989, the Texas Legislature adopted House Bill 174, mandating the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUC) to establish a statewide telecommunications relay service to provide telephone network access for individuals who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, deaf and blind, or speech-impaired. This service, known as "Relay Texas" stated on September 1, 1990 and is funded by the Texas Universal Services Fund (TUSF).