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  • Writer's pictureBill Raines

May: Helping to fill 911 open dispatch positions

STATE : Many county public safety dispatch centers are struggling to fill job openings. As a result, residents may be put on hold by 911 dispatchers. In emergencies, a delayed response can have dire consequences.

Photo: Lawrence County Sheriff Greg Day recently reported that the Lawrence County Central dispatch will be fully staffed with 11 dispatchers this weekend. Staffing issues and overtime pay because of understaffing have been an issue for the last couple years for former Sheriff Mike Branham. A high-turnover rate in a very stressful profession.

State Rep. Chris May This session, Rep. Chris May sponsored legislation to help retain and increase the number of 911 dispatchers throughout our state. Many counties in Indiana currently have residency requirements in place, which can make staffing dispatch centers more difficult. Qualified candidates residing outside of a dispatch center's county are denied positions. Senate Bill 43 would not allow public safety agencies to have local residency requirements for public safety telecommunicators, so that they can hire across county lines.

Individuals facing an emergency shouldn't have to worry if they will be put on hold when calling 911. We need to ensure that all citizens can rely on public safety dispatchers to connect them with the services they need, when they need them.

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Paid for by the committee to elect Dan Bortner Bedford City Council At-Large

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