Ideas for Getting Recognition From Partner Agencies, Media and the Community

In February, APCO’s Member & Chapter Services Committee (MCSC) surveyed chapters about how they celebrate National Public Safety Telecommunicator Week. The survey included questions about financing NPSTW, theme days, gifts, public recognition and more. 29 chapters responded and over the next few weeks, we’ll share the results here to provide ideas for your initiatives.

Our final post focuses on getting recognition from partner agencies, government departments and the public. Here are some ideas suggested by other emergency communications centers.

  • Advocate, advocate, advocate!
  • Call on friends, relatives, and significant others in the agencies for their support
  • Coordinate for donations from local public safety agencies and businesses
  • Encourage proclamations from City Councils, County Commissioners Courts, or Governor’s Offices
  • Forms are provided to field personnel to submit nominations for the People’s Choice Award.
  • Hand out booklets with notes of appreciation from coworkers or first responders in other public safety agencies
  • Have officers and/or firefighters decorate dispatch
  • Have the city or county display a large banner in a high-traffic area of town
  • Hold a banquet or award ceremony; invite other departments
  • Hold an open house for the public to come and tour the facility
  • Invite telecommunicators and their families to shift appreciation meals
  • Involve your chaplain, volunteer programs, teen programs, etc.
  • Reach out to local elected officials and the media for recognition throughout the week
  • Record “thank you” videos from people from the community, other departments, supervisors, etc. saying “thank you”
  • Send blank cards for staff at public safety agencies to sign
  • Send emails, discuss in staff meetings, and post to social media or internal channels well before the event
  • Social media posts from the department or city pages
  • Use focus committees or awards committees to spread the word
  • Write articles for the local media to run a personal interest story or series

And perhaps most importantly, knowing that no matter the size of the agency or budget, finding a way to say thank you goes a long way.