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The continuing sad state of technology in Government and Public Safety

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The technology evolution has driven massive change throughout society for more than 40 years now. Enabling worldwide paradigm shifts to occur where many thought they couldn't, such as in science, healthcare, finance, transportation, lodging, and yes… dating, among others.  Many of the changes technology has brought us have led to significant efficiencies and cost savings in addition to ‘making the impossible, possible'. 

 

So why is it that government, specifically State and Local government has lagged behind, working in many cases with outdated and/or sub optimized technology for public records and other areas, and in many cases still relying on pencil and paper to record important information and events in the community? 

 

Few areas have been more poorly ‘modernized' than Public Safety. Unfortunately, Public Safety has been consistently at the bottom of the food chain when it comes to seeing investment in technology. Law Enforcement, Fire and EMT professionals have seen minimal investment in technology over the last several decades, and it shows.  First Responders are either working with ‘durable', but highly inefficient and klugy (SP) laptops that require them to move between multiple applications and data sources in order to complete reports, or reference data critical to them doing their jobs. And in some cases (more than you might imagine), First Responders are still working with pencil and paper to capture the essence of an incident. Not smart. Not efficient.  Not safe.  And not what First Responders deserve as they do their jobs. 

 

So what's the solution?

While there likely isn't any one solution that fits all states and towns, there are fundamental ‘needs' that our First Responders want, and they are based in large part on something most of us carry these days, our smart phone. 

 

Wouldn't it make life much simpler for First Responders if they had at their disposal a device that functioned like their smart phones, that handled all aspects of their jobs from running plates to reading Miranda Rights (in any language), to running NCIC checks, to developing Incident Reports?  Wouldn't it also make life simpler if visual documentation of an incident could be integrated into a report to add depth to First Responder reporting of incidents, particularly in today's world?   

 

It's time to help our front line forces do their jobs better, more efficiently and more easily. 

 

As a Chief, what can you do? 

You can look into companies that are developing solutions that operate like smart phones and have the functionality described above. Request a demo of the product and pay close attention to the form factor (ease of use) of the product. 

 

As a Mayor or Town Administrator, what can you do?

You can take a hard look at the endless wasted Man hours and budget resulting from sub optimized solutions for First Responders today, and look out for better, mobile, less costly solutions that will create efficiencies while at the same time improving Public Safety via more comprehensive dispatching and reporting. ‘Better, Faster, Cheaper' IS available if you look for it.

As CEO, and co-founder of Mobile Incident Reporting Systems, LLC (www.MIRSLLC.com), and having spent 20 years in Public Safety, my team and I know what is missing in the Public Safety space relating to technology, and we have developed from scratch (not cobbled together legacy systems) a solutions that is fully mobile, more comprehensive, easier to use, and cheaper than anything on the market today. The US Patent OfKice thinks our solution is unique enough to have awarded our company US Patents in our area of expertise. Mir Systems is deKining how Public Safety will become mobile and more capable as we move forward together into the future.