2-1-1 Metro DC History

2000:

  • The Federal Communications Commission designated 2-1-1 the nation’s free helpline number to help people locate health and human service resources in their local community.

2002:

  • The Brookings Institution published a report “Calling 2-1-1, Enhancing the Washington Region’s Safety Net After 9/11,” advocating for a regional 2-1-1 to make it easier for residents to locate health and human services across jurisdictional  borders.
  • Under the leadership of the Nonprofit Roundtable, community leaders in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Northern Virginia formed a 2-1-1 National Capital Region Working Group collaborative to bring 2-1-1 service to the region.

2004:

  • The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments Passed Resolution R11-4 supporting the development and establishment of a regional 2-1-1 system for the Metropolitan Washington region.
  • 2-1-1 Answers, Please! launched in the District of Columbia.

2005:

  • The Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) federal grant supported development of a regional database of health and human service listings and website in the National Capital Region.

2006:

  • 2-1-1 pilot was launched throughout Virginia except in Northern Virginia.
  • 2-1-1 pilot launched in Maryland, bringing 2-1-1 access to much of the state.

2007:

  • 2-1-1 Answers, Please! merged with 3-1-1 and 9-1-1 in the Office of Unified Communications.
  • District promotes 3-1-1 for city services.
  • www.211metrodc.org launched giving the public online access to health and human service resources in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Northern Virginia.
  • 2-1-1 VIRGINIA expands access to Northern Virginia.

2009:

  • 2-1-1 Maryland coverage is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
  • 2-1-1 Maryland is a partnership of four agencies that share a statewide database of nearly 5,000 resources.
  • 2-1-1 Maryland call center specialists disseminate critical information during emergencies or disasters and act as “rumor control.”

2011:

  • The District’s  2-1-1 Answers,Please! database of health and human service resources is integrated into a regional software platform.
  • 3-1-1 operators are cross-trained to handle 2-1-1 calls during emergencies.

Present:

  • 2-1-1 service is available in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
  • The 2-1-1 call center operators have access to each jurisdiction’s database of health and human services through a shared database platform funded by United Way NCA.
  • The 2-1-1 regional database of health and human service resources in the Washington metro area is available online at www.211metrodc.org and www.211md.org
  • In 2016, more than 450,000 residents in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia dialed  2-1-1 to find or request help.
  • The 2-1-1 NCR Working Group communicates on a regular basis to share best practices and strives to provide seamless 2-1-1 service in the region.
  • The District’s 2-1-1 text number was used during the Pope’s visit in 2015.
  • 2-1-1 was the public service number for Family Reunification and Mass Care during the 58th Presidential Inauguration and the Women’s March on Washington.