On February 19, 2016, the Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) will hold a news conference to announce the launch of the Text to 9-1-1 service throughout the Greater Kansas City region, including Platte County. The Mid-America Regional Council coordinates the Kansas City Regional 9-1-1 System which handles almost two million emergency calls each year.
Over the past year, MARC has worked with local law enforcement agencies, Public Safety Answering Points and phone carriers to activate and test the service and train dispatchers to respond to incoming texts. The news conference will help launch a public education campaign using the slogan “Call if you can, text if you can’t” to help people understand that a phone call is the best way to reach 9-1-1 dispatchers, but there are certain situations when texting may be preferred. The service has the potential to save lives.
The news conference will be held at 10:00 a.m. at the Johnson County Emergency Communications Center, 11880 S. Sunset Drive, Olathe, Kansas, and remarks will be made by Platte County Sheriff Mark Owen and Walt Way representing Johnson County, co-chairs of the Public Safety Communications Board; Overland Park Councilman Curt Skoog; and chair of the MARC Board of Directors.
Following the news conference on February 19, more information will be provided on the City’s website, the MARC website and on social media using the hashtag #textto911.