Tour a 911 Call Center or PSAP
As significant efforts are underway to upgrade the nation’s 911 systems to meet the capabilities of today’s consumer technology, it is critical that elected officials understand the important work of the public safety answering point (PSAP).
Elected and appointed officials who make decisions about how 911 is governed and funded would benefit from seeing firsthand the issues a PSAP faces each day by scheduling a tour of a local PSAP. Public tours of PSAPs may not be as easy to arrange as a visit from an elected or appointed official, but you should contact your local 10-digit non-emergency law enforcement number to ask if such a tour can be arranged.
“I’ve visited a number of local 911 call centers in my district as well as the Office of Unified Communications in Washington, DC. While each center I’ve visited has been staffed by confident and capable professionals, each faces its own unique challenges. I encourage all my colleagues to visit a 911 center themselves to learn more about what we can do as legislators to support them.”
Congressman John Shimkus, Co-Chair, NextGen 9-1-1 Caucus
The Next Generation 9-1-1 Institute, which supports the Next Gen 9-1-1 Congressional Caucus, provides helpful information to facilitate a tour for national elected officials. The same ideas could be applied for all elected officials.
The National 911 Program also supported the efforts of the National 911 Education Coalition to develop a toolkit to assist PSAPs in planning for a tour with an elected official, including suggestions for a visit itinerary and tips for sharing news about the visit with the local community.