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Within the Trenches Ep 205


Welcome to another episode of Within the Trenches, true stories from the 9-1-1 dispatchers who live them. Episode 205 is a look back at the last few months of my dispatch career and the calls I took. I recently celebrated my 5 year anniversary of my last day. It’s an episode you don’t want to miss along with a few announcements.

Episode topics –

  • Back from vacation
  • A look back at the last few months of my dispatch career
    • Suicide call – The soon to be ex
    • Suicide call – I tried to call you the day you ran your car into a tree
    • Medical – Spanish translation
  • And more

As always, if you have any comments, questions, or you would like to be a guest on the show, please email me at wttpodcast@gmail.com.

 

#IAM911 #ThisIsMe

On August 24th, 2016 I inserted myself into the battle for reclassification. I wanted to prove how different 9-1-1 dispatchers were from clerical workers and commercial dispatchers by sharing anonymous stories from the Thin Gold Line. You answered the call to action by sharing all over the world and with a mere glimpse into a call you opened the eyes of millions. You gave a raw look into dispatch like no one has ever done before. You changed the media, the general public, Industry Partners and those out in the field. You are a vital piece of public safety and you gained massive recognition. I am so proud of each and every one of you and honored to know so many of you.

A month after the movement was born, a companion called Project #IAM911 was launched revealing the faces that make up the movement. The intent was to humanize the voice within the trenches. Hundreds of dispatchers sent in pictures with #IAM911 on their hands and signs revealing who they are and that they are human. Imagine Listening followed as an extension to the podcast sharing the stories that have been submitted for the movement saying that, “Your worst day is our everyday.” The #IAM911 movement continues to grow, stories are posted daily and as we approach the 2nd anniversary, the day we let the world know who we are and what we do, the movement will continue with a segment in the form of #IAM911 #ThisIsMe.

What I am looking for this time is a picture of you in dispatch or in every day life. I want you to share a glimpse into your dispatch experience, good or bad. Give me your honest, raw, look at what it has been like for you. Pictures have been posted as examples. Just remember to use #IAM911 #ThisIsMe. If you would like to do a team photo and share a glimpse into a team experience then please use #IAM911 #ThisIsUs. Let’s continue to show the world who we are and what we do. Let’s show them that when they hurt, we hurt. We are human and this is us.

Here’s to the coming anniversary. #IAM911 #ThisIsMe #ThisIsUs

Please send your memes to the Facebook podcast inbox, Twitter DM, Instagram DM or email us at wttpodcast@gmail.com. If you do not know how to create a meme you can send your image and experience and we will put it together and post it.

Continued Education – Knowing is half the battle

In any field of work you are always learning something new. This is even more true when it comes to being a 9-1-1 dispatcher. It’s one of the things that pulled me in when I first started back in 2001. I’m one of those people who get bored very easily. For example, if I’m reading an article it has to draw me in during the first paragraph or I am on to the next one. Naturally, work is the same way. So when I first started, the thought of helping others and coming into a job that wasn’t going to be the same everyday appealed to me.

My training at the beginning was minimal at best. I watched my trainer take a 9-1-1 call and then it was my turn. I was floored and thought he was joking but he was dead serious. Luckily, my first 9-1-1 call was an accident. I mean, the person who called, called on accident. It wasn’t a vehicle accident. From there I took a beginner 40-hour training course. We learned a lot, but it wasn’t focused on suicidal callers or active shooters, hell it wasn’t even on stress management and in reality, what the hell was stress management? It wasn’t a topic that I remember being mentioned when I first started.

You learn as you go and sometimes that is the best training. Nothing is the same, well, except for the call types, but one can almost guarantee that even though the call type is the same, the situation will be completely different. Again, you learn something new every day. As you continue to work you continue to train, but focused training is needed. It wasn’t until I started working for a much larger agency that I was able to experience focused training. It was then that I learned how to handle workplace negativity, leadership, stress management, active shooters and suicidal callers.

The classes were few and far between during my last 8 years in dispatch but it made me a better dispatcher. It provided the tools I needed to stay at the top of my game. If you can, I recommend seeking out training courses that will help you throughout your career. I know it seems easier said than done. I know that not all of you or your agencies can send you to any class you want because of money or being short staffed but you can search the Internet for different types of training or courses that offer premium content at an affordable price. Had I thought about it back when I was dispatching I would have taken more training courses.

One of the things I want to start doing to sharing information on training companies out there that focus on the topics that I have mentioned in this article. The first is Kim Turner, LLC. Kim is the current Communications Manager at San Bernardino out of California. She lives and breathes dispatch. She has worked on both sides of the radio and her team of elite trainers bring a new look at dispatch training for the next generation of 9-1-1. It is important to continue learning in the field of 9-1-1 dispatch. It has evolved from being a dispatcher to an emergency communications specialist.

For more information on continuing education with Kim Turner, LLC please visit the links below along with some descriptions on courses this company offers.

Kim Turner, LLC – Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Web

Courses –

Active Shooter
Dispatch Active Shooter Situations is a dynamic training class and the only one of its kind that blends the role of dispatchers in communications with the perspective of field personnel responding to the incident. This class explores the role of tactical communications to better prepare dispatchers to handle phone calls, manage radio traffic, and coordinate responding resources, as well as a resiliency component to help them after handling the traumatic incident. Facilitated by a SWAT Team Leader and Tactical Dispatch Team Leader this course sets the standard for dispatch operations.

Critical Incidents
Police and fire dispatchers handle various types of critical incidents. Natural disasters, criminal, and non-criminal incidents of a high priority can have dramatic impacts on dispatch operations. This class examines different critical incidents and the working partnerships between dispatchers and field-responders to best optimize response and handling of these events. What sets us apart is our ability to bridge the gap between the field and dispatch.

Stress Management for Supervisors and Managers
Communication supervisors and managers experience stress like their front-line employees. However, their stressors are uniquely related to their position as a leader. This is the only class in California specifically designed to equip supervisors and managers with leadership tools to resolve personnel conflict and develop resiliency for themselves and their employees.

Trauma Exposure and Management
The chronic stress of being exposed to traumatic incidents can have a heavy toll on the work performance and personal health of public-safety dispatchers. This class dives deeper into the psychology of trauma to give dispatchers a better understanding and help them become resilient, both individually and as an organization.

Within the Trenches Ep 204


Welcome to another episode of Within the Trenches, true stories from the 9-1-1 dispatchers who live them. Episode 204 features Reinhard, VP of Product and Public Safety with RapidSOS, transformative technology to save lives. It’s an episode you don’t want to miss.

Please support the podcast by supporting our sponsors.

Kim Turner, LLC – Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Web

RapidSOS – Facebook | Twitter | Web | YouTube

Episode topics –

  • Reinhard’s public safety story
  • From being in the field to Industry Partner
  • The vision of RapidSOS
  • And more

As always, if you have any comments, questions, or you would like to be a guest on the show, please email me at wttpodcast@gmail.com.

Within the Trenches Ep 203


Welcome to another episode of Within the Trenches, true stories from the 9-1-1 dispatchers who live them. Episode 203 features Christine, dispatch supervisor with Waukesha County Communications, Wisconsin, her daughter Chloe and Ryan Dedmon of Kim Turner, LLC. This episode was recorded at the convention center in Nashville, Tennessee for the 2018 National NENA conference and highlights a session that Chloe gave called, “Growing up 9-1-1.” It’s an episode you do not want to miss.

Please support the podcast by supporting our sponsors.

Kim Turner, LLC – Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Web

RapidSOS – Facebook | Twitter | Web | YouTube

Episode topics –

  • Growing up 9-1-1
  • And more

As always, if you have any comments, questions, or you would like to be a guest on the show, please email me at wttpodcast@gmail.com.

Within the Trenches Ep 202


Welcome to another episode of Within the Trenches, true stories from the 9-1-1 dispatchers who live them. Episode 202 features Morgan, dispatcher and public relations officer with Gasconade Central out of Missouri and is a Gold Line Scholarship winner. This episode was recorded at the convention center in Nashville, Tennessee for the 2018 National NENA conference.

Please support the podcast by supporting our sponsors.

Kim Turner, LLC – Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Web

RapidSOS – Facebook | Twitter | Web | YouTube

Episode topics –

  • Morgan’s 9-1-1 story
  • How Morgan started
  • Early calls and calls that have stuck with her
  • And more

As always, if you have any comments, questions, or you would like to be a guest on the show, please email me at wttpodcast@gmail.com.

Month of June / National NENA Sponsor

I am very excited to partner up with RapidSOS, a leader in emergency technology that will help save lives for years to come. Their work on location accuracy is top notch and this past week they made an exciting announcement as they partner with Apple to deliver accurate location. You can read more about it here. Again, I am excited, honored and proud to be partnering up with RapidSOS as they sponsor the podcast for the month of June as well as the National NENA conference. To learn more please make sure to check them out below.

RapidSOS is an emergency technology company that has spent the past five years working with the public safety community to provide a rich data link from any connected device to 911 and first responders. Through RapidSOS’ NG911 Clearinghouse, a PSAPs trusted source of supplemental device location and additional data, 911 can receive life-saving caller data from sources like Uber and Waze through their existing call-taking, CAD, and mapping software.

RapidSOS – Facebook | Twitter | Web | YouTube

2018 National NENA/Month of June Sponsor

Once again I am excited to have Kim Turner, LLC. as a sponsor but this time for the National NENA conference as well as for the month of June. To learn more about Kim Turner, LLC. please read below and follow their links on social media.

Kim Turner, LLC. –

Our Mission

Our mission is to provide immersive, relevant training and consulting for the next generation of public safety 911 professionals and organizations.

Our Vision

Gone are the days of mind-numbing Power Point® slideshows with no student participation and endless war stories. Our instructors and consultants are current industry leaders and practitioners who are results-driven. We integrate proven adult learning methodologies, critical thinking, and thoughtful questioning to create rich learning environments where our students thrive in their training and development.

Our Goal

Our goal is for you to thrive in the classroom to better support you as a positive change agent in your organization and we accomplish this by challenging your critical thinking skills in a respectful and rewarding way.  We work with the most renowned agencies in the country, small one-seat operations, and every size between. Our training is appropriate for dispatch, professional and sworn staff.

For more information –

Kim Turner, LLC – Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Web

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