RedSky's VP of Software Services, Jason Forehand, Speaks About Kari's Law

Jason Forehand, RedSky VP - Software Services 

I recently had the opportunity to speak to the Texas Commission on State Emergency Communications about the incident which spurred “Kari's Law.” As many of you are aware, a nine-year-old girl tried to dial 9-1-1 from a hotel room in which her mother was being stabbed, but was unable to do so because she didn’t dial “9” to get an outside line prior to dialing for help. The law, as described by the petition, would require hotels and motels to upgrade to "Enhanced 911" systems that would let guests call for help just by dialing 911. The upgrade to Enhanced 911 systems would also provide operators with the exact location of the caller, including aspects like building, room, and floor. Additionally, these systems provide 9-1-1 call alert notifications, so security and other personnel are notified immediately of a 9-1-1 call in progress, and provided with detailed location information.

This situation really spoke to me as not only a member of the 9-1-1 community, but a native Texan. In this day and age, I encourage everyone to take seriously the National Emergency Number Association’s recommendations to make 9-1-1 a dialable number without having to dial a “9” to get an outside line. Additionally, I would encourage the State of Texas to adopt an E9-1-1 policy that mirrors NENA’s recommendations. A person’s life is too important to let political concerns get in the way. Let’s all focus on a solution to provide emergency services to individuals, whether or not the State mandates it.”