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1221 SW 4th Ave. Suite 210, Portland, OR 97204
The City of Portland’s Bureau of Emergency Communications (BOEC) 9-1-1 telecommunicators are tireless, and typically “invisible” first responders serving our community. I’m honored to be assigned as the Commissioner-in-charge of the Bureau and am thrilled to honor their dedication during 2014 Public Safety Telecommunicator Week, recognized nationally and locally this week. Governor Kitzhaber has even officially declared April 13-19, 2014 as Public Safety Telecommunicator Week in Oregon.
Public Safety Telecommunicators Week was first recognized by Contra Costa County, CA, in 1981. Since then, many communities, including Portland, have given special recognition to our 9-1-1 telecommunicators, who are often the first point of contact during emergency situations.
About 141 BOEC staffs serve Portland and Multnomah County, ensuring around-the-clock response and dispatch to emergencies. These telecommunicators are a critical link between residents and emergency services, be it police, fire, or emergency medical assistance.
I thank all of our telecommunicators who work on the forefront of public safety every day, 24/7. I want to especially recognize senior dispatcher Karen Champ, who was just named the BOEC Telecommunicator of the Year. Director Lisa Turley and I congratulate Karen and the entire BOEC team. I can’t thank them enough.
As a reminder, call 9-1-1 to save a life, report a fire, or stop a crime – examples of when 9-1-1 should be called include an assault happening right now, a fire burning, or a medical problem occurring right now that could be life threatening.
The City also has a non-emergency line you can call 24 hours a day for public safety non-emergency help. Dial 503-823-3333 if, for example, a runaway child has returned home, your home or car was broken into yesterday, your vehicle was stolen sometime overnight, you need to modify a burglary report, or someone stole your bike while you were at school. You might need to wait for an answer to your non-emergency call because BOEC prioritizes 9-1-1 calls to get help to people in immediate need of emergency assistance.
Finally, if you have a general non-emergency question about how to access City or County services, you should call 503-823-4000. The City staffs this general information and referral line from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. You can also find information on the City’s website or submit a general service request online at http://www.portlandoregon.gov/oni/28398.