The RENFORT line, which can be reached at (514) 653-6363, is staffed seven days a week by specialists in psychology, sociology and criminology at the
Center for the Prevention of Radicalization Leading to Violence
The initiative is one of the commitments made by the city at last year’s Montreal Forum to Combat Gun Violence, and it is the third project to be put in place since the event. It will be financed from a $3-million envelope dedicated to projects set up by and for young Montrealers.
Roselyne Mavungu, executive director of CPRLV, said the centre took on the project because of its expertise in dealing with radicalization and hate.
Those taking calls at the centre will provide a non-judgmental ear to those who need it, she said. They can listen to concerns and answer questions in eight different languages, including English, French, Arabic and Spanish.
She emphasized it is not an emergency line, but a helpline. If there is an imminent risk of violence or danger, she said, people should call 911.
The support workers at the CPRLV are able to refer callers to resources offered by community groups.
‘Education about what is out there is key’
Sharon Nelson, the first vice-president at the Jamaica Association, a community organization that works on violence prevention, lauded the creation of the new hotline. She said it’s a way to help educate people about the resources that exist in the community.
“Education about what is out there is key,” she said. “If parents don’t know [what resources are available] then this offers them and us access to trained individuals who can guide individuals and community organizations.”
Yanick Galan, director of Le Phare community centre in the Rivire-des-PrairiesPointe-aux-Trembles borough, said his organization is participating in the program.
“We see the needs of families in the field,” he said in a news release, “and we’re delighted to be involved in setting up this new preventive and humane tool. The hotline will offer the public support and a listening ear, without judgment or criminalizing their loved one.”
Looking for help? Call or text RENFORT at (514) 653-6363, or check out the website at
The line will be staffed from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday to Friday, and from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends.