Alyssa's Law

Link to Article HERE.

PALATKA, FL, UNITED STATES, August 3, 2021 / -- Putnam County Florida has successfully launched a school safety mobile application and software system called EMMA that is integrated with the Putnam County 911 dispatch communication center. Putnam County uses a 911 dispatch software system provided by SmartCop, called SmartCAD. In under a second, a button press on EMMA will provide alert notifications to public safety officials and the dispatch software. EMMA is a mobile and PC-friendly public safety application that allows connected devices of the school and staff to send alerts and improve communication plus ensure the 911 dispatch communications center is included in alerting. EMMA has a full offering of prevention, response, and management features for very critical emergencies or everyday communications that impact the staff and students in Putnam County, Florida’s county-wide school district.

Putnam County 911 Communications Bureau Chief, Captain Kuleski says, “EMMA integrates seamlessly into our 911 public safety communications center for more effective first response and emergency management. EMMA’s integration with our SmartCop dispatch software improves knowledge and communication with an instant alert. The alert goes not only to our 911 center dispatch software but instantly is pushed to our public safety officers via their in-car mobile CAD terminals (MCT) to improve response times and eliminate or significantly decrease threat impact. We are pleased with how SmartCop and EMMA worked together to complete our needs.“

Of note is that with the successful integration of SmartCop and EMMA, Putnam County is the most recent school district in Florida to comply with Florida’s Alyssa’s Law According to recent data, approximately 35% of school districts in Florida have yet to achieve compliance and successful 911 integration with mobile panic alert systems.

Alyssa’s Alert, synonymously aligned with Alyssa’s Law, is legislation (and pending legislation) that aims to improve the response time of law enforcement during emergencies in public schools — is the designation of a mobile panic alert system capable of connecting diverse emergency services technologies to ensure real-time coordination between multiple first responder agencies. All such systems must integrate with local public safety answering point infrastructure to transmit 911 calls and mobile activations. With this partnership, SmartCop is Alyssa’s Law compatible for the dispatch center panel. However, a unique offering is that SmartCop automatically pushes the EMMA alert instantly to all public safety officer devices for improved arrival of feet on the ground without human or dispatcher delayed delivery and the alert. This instant alert includes accurate GPS location details, without cell tower triangulation delays, as well as the address and campus description plus other key data regarding the threat.

Targeted alerts and responses can occur in a defined geographic area of the school district through the GPS geofencing and mapping feature within EMMA’s unique notification system. Alerts target only those in an impacted area versus a large irrelevant geography. In addition, those receiving alerts can also respond, which is over and above any capability of the US 911 Wireless Emergency Alert Network and current technology of dispatch centers. EMMA provides significant upgrades to public safety officials, over and above the required Alyssa’s Law requirements. This feature ensures proper communication spreads to those that need to act immediately, without cell tower or potential overburdened 911 call system delays. Michael Snyder, Director of Sales and Marketing for SmartCop sums up the benefits, “We believe that getting information quickly and efficiently into the hands of public safety responders is critical to resolving issues peacefully. The implementation at Putnam County of EMMA and SmartCOP ensures that first responders have critical, decision-making information as soon as it is available.”

EMMA was developed by Think Safe as a system that solved a long-standing problem of emergency communication at workplaces and schools, especially across large geographic areas and populations. Think Safe’s data analysis of workplace and school medical and other emergencies led Company President, Paula Wickham, to question why smart devices and PCs could not be utilized more effectively to solve this problem. “Time is precious, seconds and minutes matter. This is especially true in emergency events or threats. Reliance on only using a smartphone to dial 911 is inefficient. Smart devices and connected PCs are valuable tools that can be part of the solution if we engage updated software technology, which keeps overhead and capital expenditures down while improving security and safety. EMMA was designed as a best practice solution where clients can customize the features and systems used based upon what they needed for their population and geography.”

Travis Weaver, Director of Safety at Putnam County School District states, “Putnam County Schools are pleased with our safety and security team plus administrators for their proactive and conscientious effort to provide very important safety updates to our school district. Think Safe has been an excellent partner for our school district and SmartCop has facilitated very effective communication county-wide for our improved school district safety and Alyssa’s Law compliance. Both Think Safe and SmartCop have given us one of the top alerting systems in the country and we feel that is critical but also are pleased with the expanded offering that EMMA provides our school district.”