LA considers big changes for 911 dispatch - Los Angeles
Move could save city $3.2 million.
Los Angeles officials are mulling the possibility of replacing the city's LAFD 911 dispatchers and replacing them with a civilian workforce. The proposal would also include switching the workers from a 24-hour shift to a standard 8-hour workday. The move would save the city an estimated $3.2 million per year.
An LAFD dispatcher handles a call. Photo, LA Times.
Yet, despite their training, the 911 dispatchers have received criticism and come under scrutiny because of relatively slow response times. Dispatchers blame 30-year old equipment including computers that sometimes crash the system.
The LAFD also warns that if civilians replace trained LAFD personnel in the dispatch centers, it could exacerbate, not alleviate problems. Naturally, if such a change harms innocent victims, then no amount of savings is worth it.
However, something must be done soon. The system is already overloaded that callers frequently have to hold after dialing 911, and that is a dangerous situation for everyone.
© 2012, Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: Los Angeles, 911, LAFD
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