Possible state-wide resolution to classify 911 dispatchers as first responders


KANAWHA COUNTY, W.Va. (WOWK) – 911 dispatchers; answering calls and getting the community emergency help. A job that can be strenuous and sometimes scary.

“Like Metro 911 yesterday…they did a fabulous job,” says Jim Brown, a retired 911 telecommunicator.

Tuesday, we did a story on the alarming rate of 911 calls made during that morning’s snowfall. (The link to that story is here: https://www.wowktv.com/news/kanawha-county-deals-with-hundreds-of-911-calls-because-of-the-snowfall/ )

Metro 911 received 700 calls in two hours; to put it in perspective, in a 24 hour period they typically get about 1,500.

“The Kanawha County commission here in the capitol city was the first county to put out a resolution making 911 dispatchers first responders,” says Brown.

Brown has been one of the key play makers in pushing this resolution forward in every West Virginia county. He says 55 counties have agreed, but 14 have said no.

This is the reason he wants to see the West Virginia legislature pass the resolution in this session; which would recognize 911 dispatchers as first responders, state-wide.

“I have the dream of West Virginia becoming the second state in the union behind Texas to do this, and that puts West Virginia in a positive light,” says Brown.

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