Communications Open Forum

One, two, three!

By Kimberly Burdick posted 02-04-2019 15:23



It is just under three months before the celebration begins! This year National Public Safety Telecommunicator’s Week is April 14-22nd!  It is a week-long celebration of recognition for those public safety professionals, the first, first responders, under the headsets working to keep America’s first responders and citizens safe.

Have you checked out the buttons the Southern California Chapter of APCO, or CPRA has for sale? CPRA began selling the buttons 29 years ago.  They still only cost $1 each.  Check out the button at  You’ll love it!  We already ordered ours!

Some other ideas-

  • Begin a library for Public Safety Telecommunicators. Choose books on leadership, mentoring, and stress relief ideas among the many topics and books that benefit the profession. 
  •  Audible memberships-how about a group membership?
  •  Cook books and recipe exchanges for your center?
  •  Is it possible to have an exercise room? Are there exercises your PST’s can do in place without equipment?
  •  Meditation room-This is something that is catching on with many centers. It doesn’t have to be a large room, just large enough for a comfy chair, aromatherapy, low   lighting.  It’s a room where your PST’s can retreat to if needed and if possible.
  •  Themes-every day is a different theme, character, etc., something fun! Dress up or dress down!
  •  Pot lucks-some centers already have pot lucks but for others is a novel, once in a while event. Remember to invite local responders.
  •  Can you integrate the celebration with tours for prospective applicants? Can you host a job fair at the same time?
  •  Stress relief animals-are you capable of adopting a pet? Dogs, cats, rabbits, even a hedgehog!  If not allowed, how about an aquarium?
  •  Is it possible to have a garden your telecommunicator’s can plant and take care of? The flip side is fresh, healthy veggies for breaks.
  •  Create healthy Mondays-if administration agrees, see if fresh fruit and/or veggies can be brought in weekly for snacks.
  •  Have a mystery theme contest with prizes at the end of the week. A public safety “whodunit”
  •  Mini marathons or runs-many centers have such events. You can create it as a fund raiser for a charity such as animal shelters. 
  •  Educate the clubs in your area with a short presentation about the profession of 9-1-1 and possible changes in their working area. You can never educate enough!
  •  Awards ceremonies-many centers choose this week for special awards and recognition.  Invite the mayor, council representatives, Commissioners, legislators.
  •  Attend legislative sessions and get informed about issues that may affect your center. Make sure you wear your National Telcommunicators Week buttons!

 The next two ideas are hot off the press from my Telcommunicators!

Start a program to pay it forward to different agencies with a small gift box for their Public Safety Telecommunicators. Everyone can contribute to the box and the expectation is for the receiving agency to do the same thing for another agency and so on.

 If your Public Safety Telecommunicator’s cannot currently wear jeans because of a dress code, see if administration would relax the code during the week where jeans could be worn. If jeans are worn then Telecommunicators who do wear them have to donate $1.00 per day or however much they wish towards a charity of their choice on behalf of their center.

Do you know what is even better?  Create your own lists and post them out for everyone to enjoy and gather ideas!

 Are the wheels turning?   Great!!!!  Start planning now!  Have fun, you deserve to be recognized!