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Minnesota Relay

Minnesota Relay serves Minnesotans who are Deaf, DeafBlind, and hard of hearing who use TTYs and captioned telephones. Minnesota also serves people with speech and other physical disabilities that make it difficult to use a traditional telephone. 

TTY (or TDD) 

  • Telephone device with a keyboard and a text display screen
  • Users communicate over the telephone by typing and reading their conversations
  • Calls are made through a relay service. This is different from texting because it allows the user to call landline phones
  • Portable and wireless TTYs are also available
  • Newer smartphones have a built in TTY

Captioned Telephone 

  • For people who have difficulty hearing over the telephone and prefer to use their voice to communicate
  • Requires internet service
  • Captioned calls are made through a relay service
  • Using a captioned phone the person with the hearing loss can speak and listen to the other party
  • At the same time the person can read captions of what the other party is saying on the telephone’s display screen
  • Today, many people are using captioned phones rather than voice carry over telephones

DHS and the Department of Commerce provide a comprehensive statewide outreach program to educate Minnesotans about Minnesota Relay services. Information and services available range from one-on-one training sessions to equipment demonstrations. 

Download fact sheets
Telephone Equipment Distribution Program application 
Vendor list 

Read more online 

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