Training and Staffing
911 Emergency Communications Center staff are highly trained public safety telecommunications professionals. Increasing demands resulting from the constant evolution of technology, increased Homeland Security requirements, new systems and equipment, and staff development necessitates the frequent introduction and delivery of new training curriculum to our staff.
The Emergency Communications Training Division is involved in all aspects of departmental operations, including:
- Delivering curriculum
- Developing new training curriculum
- Training recruits
- Providing continuing education training
- Revising existing training curriculum
- Scheduling training and backfilling staff to facilitate training
- Coordination of guest trainers and user agency interaction
- Cross-training of staff
- Life Safety Education Program curriculum development, delivery and updates
- Total Quality Assurance training components
- Training/certification records management
- Meeting NYS training requirements
- Publishing a bi-monthly newsletter
- Maintaining our web site
New Employee Training
Due to the highly sensitive nature of our operations, each potential public safety telecommunicator candidate is required to pass a background investigation prior to coming to work at the Emergency Communications Department.
Recruits are required to complete a rigorous 18+-week training program. This training program includes: APCO Public Safety Telecommunicator Course, telephone operation and answering skills, incident nature coding, ADA caller compliance, computer aided dispatch (CAD) system operation, emergency medical dispatch (EMD) certification, policies and procedures, suicidal callers, accidental poisoning, emotionally disturbed callers, stress management, New York State E-Justice Network, master street address guide database, and county geography. Recruits hone their call taking skills over several weeks on a telephone and CAD simulator.
A number of guest instructors cover areas such as penal law, domestic violence, stalking, environmental conservation law, cardio pulmonary resuscitation, anatomy and physiology, lost persons, hearing-impaired callers, water rescue operations, staff also participate in observation ride-along exposure training with many of our user agencies. At the conclusion of the classroom portion of their training, recruits begin extensive on-the-job training where they are constantly shadowed by an experienced communications training officer for the balance of the academy training.
All public safety telecommunicators are required to attain and maintain several types of certification. In-service training featuring both new curriculum and refresher courses encompassing a wide variety of topics is provided to employees on a regular basis. Our training program consistently exceeds New York State standards for 911 staff.
In addition, the Training Division provides remedial training at the request of shift supervisors on an as needed basis to employees with deficiencies in specific areas.
Cross-training of Staff
It is a goal of the Emergency Communications Department to cross train our staff to fulfill the various roles in the ECC. All staff are cross-trained to their abilities, with a minimum of two roles required. The training division provides cross-training for all of the disciplines within the ECC, including management and supervision training. Staff who are selected by their shift supervisor for cross-training undergo many hours of classroom training including incident dispatch simulations, followed by several weeks under the supervision of a communications training officer in the ECC.