April 1, 2011

April 2011 - National 9-1-1 Education Month

S.Res. 118: A resolution designating April 2011 as "National 9-1-1 Education Month"

SRES 118 ATS

112th CONGRESS

1st Session

S. RES. 118

Designating April 2011 as `National 9-1-1 Education Month'.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

March 30, 2011

Ms. KLOBUCHAR (for herself and Mr. BURR) submitted the following resolution; which was considered and agreed to


RESOLUTION

Designating April 2011 as `National 9-1-1 Education Month'.

Whereas 9-1-1 is nationally recognized as the number to call in an emergency to receive immediate help from police, fire, emergency medical services, or other appropriate emergency response entities;

Whereas in 1967, the President's Commission on Law Enforcement and Administration of Justice recommended that `a single number should be established' nationwide for reporting emergency situations, and other Federal Government agencies and various governmental officials also supported and encouraged the recommendation;

Whereas in 1968 the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T) announced that it would establish the digits 9-1-1 as the emergency code throughout the United States;

Whereas 9-1-1 was designated by Congress as the national emergency call number under the Wireless Communications and Public Safety Act of 1999 (Public Law 106-81);

Whereas section 102 of the ENHANCE 911 Act of 2004 (47 U.S.C. 942 note) declared an enhanced 9-1-1 system to be `a high national priority' and part of `our Nation's homeland security and public safety';

Whereas it is important that policy makers at all levels of government understand the importance of 9-1-1, how the system works today, and the steps that are needed to modernize the 9-1-1 system;

Whereas the 9-1-1 system is the connection between the public and the emergency response system in the United States and is often the first place emergencies of all magnitudes are reported, making 9-1-1 a significant homeland security asset;

Whereas more than 6,000 9-1-1 public safety answering points serve more than 3,000 counties and parishes throughout the United States;

Whereas dispatchers at public safety answering points answer more than 200,000,000 9-1-1 calls each year in the United States;

Whereas a growing number of 9-1-1 calls are made using wireless and Internet Protocol-based communications services;

Whereas a growing segment of the population, including the deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind, and individuals with speech disabilities are increasingly communicating with nontraditional text, video, and instant messaging communications services and expect those services to be able to connect directly to 9-1-1;

Whereas the growth and variety of means of communication, including mobile and Internet Protocol-based systems, impose challenges for accessing 9-1-1 and implementing an enhanced 9-1-1 system and require increased education and awareness about the capabilities of different means of communication;

Whereas the ability to communicate through voice, text, data, and video conferencing provides an opportunity for the Nation's 9-1-1 system to adopt next generation applications and services, greatly enhancing the capabilities of 9-1-1 services;

Whereas numerous other `N-1-1' and 800 number services exist for non-emergency situations, including 2-1-1, 3-1-1, 5-1-1, 7-1-1, 8-1-1, poison control centers, and mental health hotlines, and the public needs to be educated about when to use such services in addition to, or instead of, 9-1-1;

Whereas international visitors and immigrants make up an increasing percentage of the population of the United States each year, and visitors and immigrants may have limited knowledge of our emergency calling system;

Whereas people of all ages use 9-1-1 and it is critical to educate people on the proper use of 9-1-1;

Whereas senior citizens are at high risk for needing to call 9-1-1 and many senior citizens are learning to use new technology;

Whereas thousands of 9-1-1 calls are made each year by children who are properly trained in the use of 9-1-1, which saves lives and underscores the critical importance of training children about 9-1-1 early in life;

Whereas the 9-1-1 system is often misused, such as through the placement of prank and non-emergency calls;

Whereas misuse of the 9-1-1 system results in costly and inefficient use of 9-1-1 and emergency response resources, and such misuse needs to be reduced;

Whereas parents, teachers, and caregivers must be educated about 9-1-1 in order to play an active role in 9-1-1 education for children;

Whereas there are many avenues for 9-1-1 public education, including safety fairs, school presentations, libraries, churches, businesses, public safety answering point tours or open houses, civic organizations, and senior citizen centers;

Whereas parents, teachers, and the National Parent Teacher Association contribute significantly to the goal of educating children about the importance of 9-1-1 through targeted outreach efforts to public and private schools;

Whereas the United States should strive to host at least 1 annual educational event regarding the proper use of 9-1-1 in every school in the Nation;

Whereas the people of the United States deserve the best education regarding the use of 9-1-1; and

Whereas programs to promote proper use of 9-1-1 during `National 9-1-1 Education Month' may include--

(1) public awareness events, such as conferences and media outreach;

(2) training activities for businesses, parents, teachers, school administrators, and other caregivers;

(3) educational events in schools and other appropriate venues; and

(4) production and distribution of information about the 9-1-1 system, designed to educate people of all ages on the importance and proper use of 9-1-1: Now, therefore, be it

    Resolved, That the Senate--

      (1) designates April 2011 as `National 9-1-1 Education Month'; and

      (2) urges Government officials, parents, teachers, school administrators, caregivers, businesses, nonprofit organizations, and the people of the United States to observe `National 9-1-1 Education Month' with appropriate ceremonies, training events, and activities.

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