Bill to reclassify 911 telecommunicators is long overdue

By Glenn Bischoff

The 911 telecommunicator community received some news last week that undoubtedly buoyed their spirits. A bill was introduced into the U.S. House by Rep. Norma Torres (D-Calif.)—a former telecommunicator—and Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.)—a former Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) special agent and federal prosecutor—that would give telecommunicators (i.e., call-takers and dispatchers) the recognition they richly deserve as an integral component of public safety and emergency response.

SOURCE: Urgent Communications

DATE: March 14, 2019

The 911 Supporting Accurate Views of Emergency Services (SAVES) Act would place telecommunicators under the category of “protective service occupations” in the  Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) catalog—the category that includes police officers and firefighters. Currently, telecommunicators fall under the category of “office and administrative support occupation,” a classification that includes mail clerks, secretaries, office clerks, typists, meter readers, telephone operators, mail carriers, file clerks, bank tellers, gambling cage workers and the like.

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