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April 11-17: National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week

The State 911 Committee (SNC) gives tribute to Michigan telecommunicators and their vital contributions to public safety.

In 1991, the United States Congress designated the second week in April, this year April 11-17, as National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week.

 In Michigan, the SNC is privileged to honor those who serve in this important role in our state.

In Michigan, 911 centers serve as the primary point for dispatching police, fire and EMS responses. In addition to answering and dispatching emergency calls, telecommunicators also provide medical pre-arrival instructions, activate weather alerts, coordinate additional incident scene response such as Child Protective Service, hospitals, road commission, utility and public works department notifications; and handle the call-outs for specialized response teams such as search and rescue, activating medical examiners and hazmat response teams.

Telecommunicators receive calls through many different 911 dialing systems including wireless, traditional telephones, Voice Over the Internet Protocol and in some counties, via texts.

The SNC was established in accordance with Public Act 79 of 1999. It is a 21-member organization that works to promote the successful development, implementation, and operation of 911 systems across Michigan.

Quick Facts about 911:

  • On February 16, 1968, Alabama Speaker of the House, Mr. Rankin Fite, made the first 911 call from the Haleyville City Hall. 
  • Today there are 136 primary Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) in Michigan.
  • According to the SNC’s 2020 Annual Report to the Michigan Legislature, of the counties and service districts that reported, telecommunicators in Michigan answered: 6,469,216 calls to 911; 9,585 texts-to-911; and 7,335,921 calls from non-emergency 911 lines. 
  • There are approximately 2,100 telecommunicators in Michigan.
  • Certified 911 telecommunicators in Michigan must complete at least 80 hours of basic and advanced dispatch training within their first 24 months of employment, and maintain continuing education requirements by participating in approved courses and accumulating at least 24 continuing education hours every 24 months.
  • Michigan currently has 50 counties (covering 38.06% of the population) converted to an IP-based service, which allows for more advanced Next-Generation 911 call handling. Thirty-two additional counties, plus two Wayne County Service Districts, are working through the transition process. 
  • As of December 2020, 77 counties and one Wayne County Service District have deployed text-to-911 calls, representing 76.46% of the population; additional counties and service districts are working toward accepting text-to-911 calls.

A map of current text-to-911 deployments can be found at under “Emerging Technology.”


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