New York City Council Header
File #: Res 0985-2011    Version: * Name: Develop a plan that would allow New York City residents to contact 911 and 311 through text messages.
Type: Resolution Status: Filed
Committee: Committee on Technology
On agenda: 8/17/2011
Enactment date: Law number:
Title: Resolution calling upon the New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications to work with the New York City Police and Fire Departments as well as wireless carriers to develop a plan that would allow New York City residents to contact 911 and 311 through text messages.
Sponsors: Letitia James, Lewis A. Fidler, Vincent J. Gentile, Rosie Mendez, Domenic M. Recchia, Jr., Jumaane D. Williams, Elizabeth S. Crowley, Michael C. Nelson
Council Member Sponsors: 8
Res. No. 985
 
Resolution calling upon the New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications to work with the New York City Police and Fire Departments as well as wireless carriers to develop a plan that would allow New York City residents to contact 911 and 311 through text messages.
 
 
By Council Members James, Fidler, Gentile, Mendez, Recchia, Williams, Crowley and Nelson
 
Whereas, Text messaging has become one of the most popular ways of communicating; and
Whereas, Text messaging provides the hearing-impaired with an alternative to the TTY system, which requires a teletypewriter usually the size of a standard computer keyboard; and
Whereas, Allowing New York City residents to contact the 911 system through text messages will permit individuals in unsafe environments to communicate quickly and discreetly; and
Whereas, The Black Hawk County 911 Center in Iowa has been successfully accepting text messages since August 2009 and provides a model which the City can adapt and implement; and
Whereas, Other communities across the country have begun exploring the implementation of similar systems or creation of a separate emergency text messaging number; and
Whereas, New York City's 911 and 311 systems were upgraded in 2008 to accept photos and videos online after a call has already been placed; and
Whereas, The citywide 311 online system currently allows residents to follow up on the status of existing complaints and has begun to accept the submission of specific types of complaints online; and
Whereas, The citywide 311 system includes an iPhone application through which specific complaints can be submitted using a mobile phone; and
Whereas, The citywide 311 system provides answers to non-emergency questions through text messages; and
Whereas, The next step in developing the capabilities of the 911 and 311 systems should be to incorporate text messaging for emergency correspondence and submitting complaints; now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Council of the City of New York calls upon the New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications to work with the New York City Police and Fire Departments as well as wireless carriers to develop a plan that would allow New York City residents to contact 911 and 311 through text messages.
 
CG
6/17/11
LS #1802