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Rep. Torres Commemorates National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week

Date: 2017-04-13
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In commemoration of National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, Rep. Norma J. Torres (D-Pomona) highlighted the important work of 9-1-1 dispatchers through the introduction of a congressional resolution and by taking part in a series of local events and site visits. 

“After working for nearly 18 years as a 9-1-1 dispatcher, I know first-hand the challenges our public safety telecommunicators face, the stress they are under, and the critical importance of their work,” said Torres.  “9-1-1 dispatchers are the unsung heroes of the first responder community and they rarely get the recognition they deserve.”

On April 6th, Torres, along with 17 Members of Congress, introduced H.Con.Res 50, a resolution supporting the goals and ideals of National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week which takes place April 9-15, 2017.  During this week, Torres will also take part in the 29th Annual Public Safety Telecommunicators Awards Banquet hosted by the California Public Safety Radio Association in Ontario on April 13th, and on April 14th will tour the CHP Communications Center in Los Angeles, visit the Los Angeles County Fire Dispatch Center, and attend the LAPD Metropolitan Communications Dispatch Center Open House, where Torres worked, in order to hear directly from dispatchers about the issues impacting their field.

“I look forward to spending time with my fellow dispatchers and getting the latest on-the-ground updates,” continued Torres.  “Ultimately, this week is about so much more than just recognizing the critical work they do every day.  If dispatchers don’t get the recognition they deserve, they will never get the resources they need.  This is why I will continue to push for improved training and professionalization of the workforce and for the reclassification of emergency dispatcher as a protective service occupation.  Only then will dispatchers receive the support, benefits, and resources that truly reflect the realities of their job.”

Earlier this year, Torres also met with emergency dispatchers at the Chino and Ontario Police Departments, and she has previously written to the Office of Management and Budget urging them to change the classification of emergency dispatchers in their Standard Occupational Classification system.

National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week takes place the second week of April every year. The text of H.Con.Res. 50 can be found here.

 - People, Places & Things/9-1-1magazine.com (via Office Of Congresswoman Norma J. Torres, 4/12/17)

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