Computer Aided Dispatch: What Does It Have To Do with National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day?
When you think of law enforcement, you probably don’t immediately think of Computer Aided Dispatch. But Computer Aided Dispatch is a huge part of the daily lives and work of United States’ hundreds of thousands of law enforcement officers. There is no better time to recognize just how difficult these officers’ jobs can be… and how Computer Aided Dispatch helps keep them and American citizens safe… than on National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day, which is today.
National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day was founded in 2015. According to NationalToday.com, the holiday “was triggered by the chain of events in 2014, when a police officer was involved in a crossfire shooting in Missouri.” National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day was created to correct the negative misperceptions stemming from that incident. NationalToday.com continues, “The day also raises awareness on the importance of understanding that the difficult decisions taken by police officers are in the best interest of citizens and the law.” But what does this have to do with Computer Aided Dispatch?
Computer Aided Dispatch systems are something the average citizen is only vaguely aware of, if at all. Computer Aided Dispatch (sometimes called public CAD, and often integrated with Police Records Management Systems) are public safety software systems that allow, as the name suggests, for computer-aided dispatching. The interconnected systems of emergency dispatch software and other public safety software allows officers to respond quickly to emergencies and other incidents, while equipping them with critical information about the calls. This not only allows officers to get up to speed more quickly on the situation they’ll face, but can literally save lives — both the officers’ and the involved citizens’.
Computer Aided Dispatch systems, however, can be remarkably complex. With countless municipalities deploying multiple systems used to track calls, record incidents, dispatch personnel, manage records, and track evidence and incarcerations (among many other functions), teaching these systems to work together and exchange information can be very difficult. The task of a Computer Aided Dispatch system (and the challenge before those programming such systems, as Caliber Public Safety personnel do) is not merely to relay calls and populate incident information. It is also to alert officers to potentially life-saving data they might not otherwise receive on the way to, or even during, the call for service.
For example, a properly integrated Computer Aided Dispatch system can alert officers not only to the address of the call and the personnel involved but whether those individuals have previous records, are known to be dangerous, and so on. When a Computer Aided Dispatch system works in concert with a Records Management System (Caliber Public Safety provides a full suite of public safety solutions, including CAD NG, Mobile solutions, and Online RMS), data is tracked, processed, and seamlessly passed along to every point in the process. The result is much more efficient and streamlined for all involved, from the dispatchers to the officers responding to any other emergency personnel whose presence and services might be required. It arguably results in better outcomes for the involved citizens, too… and it all starts with a Computer Aided Dispatch system.