Today I bring an especially important message to area seniors: The Volusia Sheriff’s Office has job openings for 911 public safety telecommunicators and I need you to help us get the word out by talking with your working-age family members about this opportunity.
Telecommunicators are the folks at our Sheriff’s Communications Center who answer citizens’ emergency calls for help. They’re the link between every crisis and every first responder.
The job of telecommunicator is exciting, demanding, and fulfilling. It requires critical thinking and decision-making skills. It’s exciting to dispatch deputies, police officers, and fire/rescue workers to emergencies. For people who want to make a positive difference in people’s lives, that’s the reward of being a 911 telecommunicator.
This might be a great fit for your children or grandchildren. They can apply online at volusiasheriff.org/careers and even take a preliminary test electronically, right away, as part of the application process.
We continually upgrade technology and offer extensive training at the Communications Center. For example, we recently announced that we’re preparing to launch a new platform for emergency callers to make video 911 calls in certain cases. With this technology, our dispatchers can share the video and crucial information with responding units even before they arrive on scene.
In April, we added a mental health crisis counselor to work alongside our 911 dispatchers to assist on some calls involving people in mental health crises. This tool will help our dispatchers direct calls in potentially volatile situations more quickly.
Our training program lasts about 10 months and includes several phases. They won’t be alone: A certified communications training officer walks alongside to guide the process.
Last year our telecommunicators underwent specialized national training on the best strategies for handling 911 callers who are at risk of suicide or other mental illness crises. It was the first of its kind for our dispatchers. It’s essential training for every dispatcher because they’re on the front lines of our country’s mental health crisis, just like our deputies are.
Unfortunately, emergencies are a part of life and that means 911 telecommunicators will always be needed. It’s one of the most important jobs in the world. Please encourage your family members to apply today!
Help us keep everyone safe,
Sheriff Mike Chitwood