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US Senate Endorses April as National 9-1-1 Education Month

Thursday, April 10, 2008
Endorsement puts Congress behind a national effort by the Coalition for 9-1-1 Education

(Washington, DC) The US Senate today adopted endorsing April as National 9-1-1 Education Month. The resolution, sponsored by Congressional E9-1-1 Caucus Co-Chairs: Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY) and Senator Ted Stevens (R-AK), puts Congress behind a national effort by the Coalition for 9-1-1 Education, an alliance of 8 national organizations dedicated to advancing public safety communications who have joined together to advance 9-1-1 education. 

The organizations are:

  • The E9-1-1 Institute
  • The National Emergency Number Association (NENA)
  • 9-1-1 For Kids®
  • The National Association of State 9-1-1 Administrators (NASNA)
  • The Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO)
  • CTIA – The Wireless Association®
  • 911 Industry Alliance
  • COMCARE Emergency Response Alliance

Each of the groups is calling upon public safety officials, schools, government officials, and industry leaders to engage in a national effort to educate children, seniors, and the general public about the importance of an appropriate use of 9-1-1 services. During the month of April, these organizations will conduct special outreach to encourage more 9-1-1 education. The groups praised the efforts of Senator Clinton and Senator Stevens for their extraordinary bi-partisan leadership in passing the resolution.

“In an emergency, knowing how to correctly use 9-1-1 can mean the difference between life and death. Effective 9-1-1 education can save lives, aid our first responders, and keep our communities safe,” Senator Clinton said. “We should do all we can to educate the public about this vital service and I am pleased that the Senate has passed this resolution and has designated April and National 9-1-1 Education Month.”

“9-1-1 calls are a lifeline for those in danger, and are essential for our public safety personnel to respond quickly to emergencies,” said Senator Stevens (R-Alaska). “Designating April 2008 as National 9-1-1 Education Month recognizes the important need to educate all Americans about the proper use of 9-1-1.”

The US House of Representatives approved a similar resolution (H. Res. 537) endorsing a National 9-1-1 Education Month on March 10, 2008.

Retired NFL great Tim Brown, the national spokesperson for the Coalition, said: “the 9-1-1 system can save lives, but it requires dedicated individuals who care about public safety to take the time to educate a child or parent or teacher on how to use it.”  Brown said: “No effort to teach someone about 9-1-1 is too small.  I want to encourage every parent, teacher, and public safety official to take some time out during National 9-1-1 Education Month to make sure their loved ones, students, and constituents understand the importance of 9-1-1.”

“We can never do enough to educate the public about 9-1-1. The commitment of this impressive coalition of public safety and industry to dedicate time and effort to advance 9-1-1 education will help save lives and will produce a significant return on whatever effort is made,” said Gregory L. Rohde, Executive Director of the E9-1-1 Institute. He said that “in addition to school-based activities, there could be conferences and training events for parents, teachers, caregivers that bring together the public safety community and industry leaders in a common effort.”

"In today’s ever-changing communications landscape, we cannot underestimate the importance of better educating the public and managing public expectations about the 9-1-1 system. We are pleased to join all of these groups in support of this important resolution in support of much needed increased 9-1-1 education efforts," said NENA President Jason Barbour.

"We are chartered to educate children on how to summon Public Safety services. This month will underscore that need and highlight the activities to accomplish that end. It will also emphasize the overall effort to educate all of our Nation in this vital task, properly calling 911. We are pleased and honored to be a part of this undertaking," said Elise Kim, the Executive Director of 911 for Kids.

“NASNA looks forward to working with our communities in each of the states to develop the materials and presentations that will be useful. This is part of our mission,” said Richard Taylor, President of NASNA.

“APCO members are on the front lines of emergency calls every day,” said Willis Carter, APCO President. “Our nation’s 9-1-1 telecommunicators are challenged daily and an educated 9-1-1 calling public makes their job easier and ensures positive outcomes for all parties involved. We think this is a tremendous idea and we are very pleased to be a part of it,” said Willis Carter, APCO President.

“The commercial wireless industry plays a uniquely important role in transmitting emergency calls, and helping public safety locate people needing help,” said CTIA President and CEO Steve Largent, “We support the effort to educate Americans about the value of 9-1-1 service and look forward to continuing our collaborative efforts with the numerous dedicated organizations in the public safety community.”

"This is clearly an exciting time for the Coalition and the 9IA organization. We have reached a crossroads for 9-1-1 in America—the importance of public education has never been greater due to consumer technology surpassing an aging 9-1-1 infrastructure. The passing of this resolution gives us more opportunity than ever before to truly make a difference in public perception and continue to fulfill our number mission of delivering the best possible 9-1-1 service to the public,” stated Kevin Murray, Vice-Chairperson, 9-1-1 Industry Alliance.

”Modernizing 9-1-1 is the key to an overall informed emergency system,” said David Aylward, Director of COMCARE Emergency Response Alliance, whose 100 organizational members advocate for advanced response using the latest technologies and procedures. 

Note: Links to the following organizations' websites appear in the Related Content section at the bottom of this page.

About the E9-1-1 Institute

The E9-1-1 Institute is a not-for-profit organization, which provides administrative and policy support to the Congressional E9-1-1 Caucus. The purpose of the E9-1-1 Institute is to promote public education and awareness of E9-1-1 and emergency communications issues and serve the Congressional E9-1-1 Caucus as a clearinghouse of information on E9-1-1 and emergency communications issues. Gregory L. Rohde, the former Administrator of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, serves as the E9-1-1 Institute’s Executive Director.

About NENA

The National Emergency Number Association (NENA) is The Voice of 9-1-1™. Now celebrating its 26th year, NENA was established to promote implementation and awareness of 9-1-1 as North America’s universal emergency number. NENA has grown to become the leading professional non-profit organization dedicated solely to 9-1-1 emergency communications issues. NENA serves its nearly 7,000 members in 47 chapters across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico through policy advocacy, the establishment of technical and operational standards, certification programs and a broad spectrum of educational offerings.

About APCO

The Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) International is the world’s oldest and largest professional organization dedicated to the enhancement of public safety communications. APCO International serves the professional needs of its 15,000 members worldwide by creating a platform for setting professional standards, addressing professional issues and providing education, products, and services for people who manage, operate, maintain and supply the communications systems used by police, fire, and emergency medical dispatch agencies throughout the world.


The National Association of State Nine One One (9-1-1) Administrators (NASNA) is a not-for-profit organization representing those states with a central 9-1-1 planning or administrative authority. NASNA serves its membership through the sharing of technical, operational and legislative information and assists in the coordination of implementing 911 emergency systems.

About CTIA

CTIA-The Wireless Association® is an international nonprofit membership organization founded in 1984, representing all sectors of wireless communications – cellular, personal communication services and enhanced specialized mobile radio.

As an organization, we represent service providers, manufacturers, wireless data and internet companies, as well as other contributors to the wireless universe. CTIA advocates on their behalf before the Executive Branch, the Federal Communications Commission, Congress, and state regulatory and legislative bodies. 

About 9-1-1 For Kids

9-1-1 for Kids® is the official caller training education program for the United States, Canada, and the Cayman Islands, all countries which use 9-1-1 as its universal emergency number. The program teaches students how to save lives & property and respond to disaster situations through the proper use of 9-1-1. The 9-1-1 for Kids programs implemented by local, federal and international public safety: dispatch centers, agencies, and organizations throughout schools, youth organizations  & activities, and community events. The organization is endorsed and supported by APCO, NENA, and NASNA.

About the 911 Industry Alliance

The 9-1-1 Industry Alliance ("9IA") was established in December 2005 by a group of prominent industry leaders. The vision of the organization's founders is that 9IA will play an important role as the voice of industry companies on major public policy issues and that the expertise of industry leaders can assist public policymakers and government emergency communications professionals as complex choices are made regarding advanced 9-1-1 alternatives in the years ahead. 

About COMCARE Emergency Response Alliance

COMCARE Emergency Response Alliance is a national non-profit alliance dedicated to advancing emergency response. We promote the adoption of modern, interoperable emergency systems and the development of new procedures, training, and tools to maximize their value for emergency responders. We encourage cooperation across professional, jurisdictional and geographic lines, seeking to improve effectiveness through solutions that integrate emergency response professions, government, and the public and private industry. COMCARE’s 100+ organizational members represent the wide diversity of the emergency response community.