Texas now recognizes 911 dispatchers as first responders

  • Source: Cleburne Times-Review
  • Published: 09/06/2019 12:00 AM

As calls come in through 911, dispatchers are ready to deliver instructions on how to perform CPR on someone who is not breathing, tell them best way to evacuate a building that is on fire or help guide them through a life-threatening situation. At the same time, dispatchers are on the other side of the call figuring out which emergency response is needed, where it’s needed and how to get them there. Although police and firefighters are classified as first responders — a public safety employee or volunteer whose duties include responding rapidly to an emergency — dispatchers, under the U.S. Department of Labor, have always been classified as an office and administrative support occupation. During the 86th Legislative Session, lawmakers in Texas passed House Bill 1090, which changes the definition of a first responder to include “an emergency responder, operator or emergency services dispatcher, who provides communication support services.”


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