The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is pleased to announce that the Department of Public Safety’s dispatch center has met internationally recognized training standards for public safety telecommunicators, resulting in the April 28 award of P33 Certification by the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO).
“This certification recognizes the exemplary level of professionalism demonstrated by personnel at our Union County Police Regional Dispatch Center,” said Freeholder Chairman Christopher Hudak. “Union County has become the first county in New Jersey to achieve P33 Certification and one of only three dozen in the country.”
In the U.S., achieving P33 Certification enables public safety agencies to ensure that their training programs meet the APCO American National Standards. The three-year certification cycle requires both initial training for new dispatchers, as well as a continuing education program for current dispatchers.
“The emergency telecommunications field is constantly changing, and P33 Certification enables us to ensure that our dispatchers have up-to-date skills that meet the challenges of today,” said Andrew Moran, Director of the Union County Department of Public Safety.
Union County’s emergency dispatch services underwent a significant expansion in 2012 with the opening of the new state-of-the-art Union County Police Regional Dispatch Center. The new nine-console facility replaced the County’s former dispatch center at the Ralph Froehlich Public Safety Building in Westfield, which had only two consoles.
In addition to handling emergency dispatch for County operations, the Dispatch Center provides municipalities with a county-local shared service opportunity for handling their police, fire, 911, and/or EMS calls.
Current participants in Dispatch Center include Clark, Fanwood, Hillside, Mountainside, Roselle, Roselle Park, Scotch Plains, Springfield, the Township South Orange in Essex County, and two paramedic units operated by Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in Rahway.
For its achievement of the P33 Certification, the Union County Police Regional Dispatch Center will be recognized by APCO on August 6 at the Food for Thought Luncheon during the organization’s 80th Annual Conference & Expo in New Orleans.