The Revolution in Emergency Communications: How Next Generation 911 and FirstNet Are Poised to Change Policing in America

Future of Emergency Communications
The Revolution in Emergency Communications: How Next Generation 911 and FirstNet Are Poised to Change Policing in America
Duration: 60 Minutes
Module 1 Resources
Recorded on: 2018-07-31
Unit 1 Slide Deck: The Revolution in Emergency Communications
Unit 2 Recording: The Revolution in Emergency Communications
Unit 3 Workbook: The Revolution in Emergency Communications

The numbers 9-1-1 has become synonymous with emergency response, not just within the United States but even in the other parts of the globe. Children are taught how to dial it in case things go wrong soon as they know their numbers. It has no doubt significantly contributed to the solving of crimes and saving of lives.

Unfortunately, 911 hasn’t innovated so much since its first inception fifty years ago. Technology has greatly transformed and yet there are areas in the country that still rely on legacy 911 systems of basic copper wire and circuit switches. An agency as critical as 911 must keep up with the times so it may serve the people better and faster.

On today’s webinar, Kevin Morison, the Chief Operations Officer of the Police Executive Research Forum (PERF) is our esteemed speaker. Kevin spent 35 years as a civilian in the law enforcement and criminal justice profession. With PERF, he is involved in research and projects that improve law enforcement operations. Kevin tackled a myriad of topics in the course as he discusses modernization initiatives for emergency response services.


Some of the points he talked about include:

  • The Revolution in Emergency Communications PERF report that reviewed the 911 system and ways to modernize its operations.
  • An overview on PERF, its members base, and functions.
  • A detailed timeline that illustrates the current 911 system and how NextGen Technology (NG911) can improve the process and make incident response faster.
  • NextGen’s approach that can impact the citizens, the dispatch, and the first responders by providing thorough and accurate information.
  • The NextGen-Dispatch-FirstNet end-to-end process model that allows faster collection, analysis, and transmission of data.
  • A brief overview and statistics about the 911 system.
  • The maintenance and operational issues that comes with maintaining the old and outdated 911 systems.
  • The gap between the current 911 system and the way that Americans today prefer to communicate.
  • The various type of information and content that can be utilized and maximized through the NG911 technology.
  • How NG911 addresses resiliency and redundancy through backup systems and inter-agency connectivity that is a common problem with legacy 911 set up.
  • The technology requirements to run the NG911 system and a snapshot of the NG911 migration progress across the US thus far.
  • What FirstNet is, the technical aspects involved in setting up the technology, and its key features that allows integration of LMRs to LTE technology.
  • The potential challenges and issues an institution will face adapting to these new technologies.
  • Poll questions look at:
    • The participant’s experience with 911 and emergency communication systems
    • Common activities that the participants do with their smartphones
    • The participants’ jurisdictions’ likelihood to adopt the new technologies
  • Some of the questions raised during the Q&A segment include:
    • Text to 911 service
    • PERF’s education and awareness-raising initiatives
    • The need to procure CAD system to maximize FirstNet
    • NG911 and FirstNet system integration
    • Agencies and case studies exhibiting the effectiveness of NG911 and FirstNet
    • Accurate location services for cellphone-initiated calls
    • Additional training needs necessary to move into NextGen and FirstNet
    • Dealing with overwhelming amounts of data and information from the technologies
    • How the technologies will impact the workforce
Additional Resources
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