Author: Gerald “Jerry” Jaskulski, Department of Homeland Security, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), Next-Generation 911 (NG911) Working Group Federal Lead
Across the nation, the emergency communications community is looking to upgrade analog 911 call centers to digital or Internet Protocol (IP)-based systems, referred to as NG911, to allow call centers to receive and share voice, photos, videos, and text messages from the public. As state offices, 911 authorities, emergency communication centers (ECC), and public safety answering points (PSAP) work toward implementing NG911 networks, assessing progress can pose challenges.
To address this challenge, the SAFECOM and the National Council of Statewide Interoperability Coordinators (NCSWIC) NG911 working group, with support from CISA and the National 911 Program, released a new tool to help ECC/PSAP administrators and oversight personnel evaluate a system’s NG911 maturity state and understand the next steps necessary to continue deployment.
This easy-to-use checklist establishes a common terminology and identifies key milestones to help 911 call centers understand the multi-year NG911 implementation process. The tool is a downloadable Microsoft Excel file, which ensures that collected results are only shared with the agency completing the assessment.
The NG911 Self-Assessment Tool is now available online at: https://www.911.gov/project_ng911tool.html.
Over the past year, the NG911 working group collaborated with government, industry, and academia stakeholders to develop the tool. The emergency communications community can use the tool to evaluate their NG911 maturity state and develop plans to transition to NG911. CISA is excited to partner with National 911 Program to make the tool available on 911.gov.