Improving access to social services that formal responders are unable or under-equipped to provide
Every community has members who can provide specialized support and services, but aren’t being dispatched through the local 9-1-1 system.
Our Beacon dispatch platform is changing that.
Whether community responders are being alerted by the local dispatch center or are self-dispatching to emergencies, Beacon makes it possible to alert, coordinate and track mobile crisis response teams who have specialized skills, training and experience to offer.
Included here are links to stories about how Beacon is making innovative community policing and mobile crisis response networks possible.
Beacon is just the innovation to quickly connect community members who can provide social and support services that traditional 911 responders cannot.
“This is what community policing can look like. We are doing exactly what society is asking for: give police the role they are good at, which is getting the scene safe, and then allow those of us with the expertise and the access to resources to work with the victims.”
Despite Good Samaritan protections, lots of people are reluctant to call 9-1-1 to report overdoses. Groups like Greater Hartford Harm Reduction Coalition and Overdose Lifeline are using Beacon to dispatch community responders equipped with naloxone to reduce response times and offer resources formal 9-1-1 responders can’t.
In Las Vegas, the police department have teamed up with SafeNest, a domestic violence advocacy organization, to dispatch trained counselors to provide support and counseling services the police department can’t. Our Beacon dispatch platform ensures the right responders are sent at the right time.
9-1-1 responders have minimal training in mental health crisis, yet mental health crisis hotlines don’t dispatch their trained crisis counselors. In San Diego, Beacon’s being used to dispatch crisis counselors when calls to 9-1-1 for mental health emergencies have no medical complaint or criminal component.
When stay-at-home restrictions cut at-risk populations off from essential services, community groups in Minneapolis and Seattle quickly banded together through Beacon to set up resource delivery networks and ensure the vulnerable were getting the supplies and medications they need. In other locations, Beacon’s being used to deliver testing supplies and even vaccinations to those same groups.
How Beacon enables community response networks
Beacon’s flexibility allows a wide range of different response groups to alert, track and coordinate local networks. Here’s a general overview of how Beacon can help your community engage local responders. If you don’t see what you’re looking for, send us an email — we’ll help you figure out what’s needed!
- EMERGENCY IS REPORTED
A witness identifies a need for urgent, rapid support (e.g., an overdose, a domestic crisis, a mental health crises, et al)
- RESPONSE DISPATCH
A dispatcher receives the call from the witness, enters the incident location and other essential information into Beacon and sends it as a text message alert to the appropriate community responders (e.g., outreach workers equipped with naloxone, crisis counselors, mental health specialists)
- COMMUNITY RESPONSE
Community responders reply to the alert indicating their availability; Beacon determines the nearest and most appropriate resources and personnel instructs them to proceed to the location
- CONFIRM ON-SCENE
Responders locate the victim and update the dispatcher through Beacon, ensuring accountability and maintaining open communications should more resources be needed
- ASSISTANCE ON-SCENE
Once on-scene, community responders are able to provide specialized support and services (e.g., naloxone administration, access to shelter and counseling, referrals to specialized care, et al)
- INTERVENTION, TRANSPORT OR RELEASE
If necessary, responders are able to offer access to additional off-site services, counseling or transport to an appropriate medical facility