Recently, the Federal Government released a committee report. This report included the recommendation that the Standard Occupational Classification (SOC), NOT be modified to change the classification of Public Safety Telecommunicator from “Office and Administrative Support” to critical public safety professional. This was in direct opposition to the recommendations from APCO, NENA and the Congressional NextGen 9-1-1 Caucus.
The hope was that the committee would agree to reclassify Telecommunicator as a “Protective Service Occupation”. This is the same category as firefighters, police officers (and life guards).
Brian Fontes, CEO of NENA – “The men and women of 9-1-1 do so much more than just answer the phone. They guide callers through life-saving procedures, provide advice on how to handle dangerous situations, and provide critical backup to field responders, all while under great stress and pressure.”
APCO President Brent Lee- ” I am extremely disappointed that the Policy Committee failed to address the inaccurate classification of Public Safety Telecommunicators in the SOC.”
It would appear that the Office of Management and Budget does not ‘hear’ the compelling story of the service Call Takers and Dispatchers provide.
As I understand it, NENA and APCO will be meeting with both OMB and Congress in an effort to resolve this before the SOC classification is finalized in 2017.
One thought- The Washington, D.C. “Unified Command” PSAP is only a 16 minute drive from the Office of Personnel Management. I had the pleasure of meeting Karima Holmes , the Director, last week. I am sure that she would be more that willing to give the OPM Committee Members a tour.
Would somebody please set this up?? (Directions provided above..)