PRESS RELEASE: Maryland Launches Text to 9-1-1 Statewide Today
Annapolis, MD: For the past six years, Sen. Cheryl Kagan has been dedicated to updating our State’s emergency response systems. In memory of Carl Henn, she has enacted nine bills to modernize our 9-1-1 system, including the groundbreaking SB339/HB397 in 2019. Kagan chairs the Next Generation 9-1-1 (NG911) Commission, which has put Maryland at the cutting edge nationally of public safety policy.
Starting today, anyone in the State can text to 9-1-1 in the event of an emergency. It is vitally important that those in need call if they can and text if they can’t.
“Texting to 9-1-1 instead of calling will help save lives,” said Sen. Cheryl Kagan, Chair of the Commission. “Maryland’s public safety employees will now have another tool as they respond to emergencies needing police, fire, and paramedics. I wonder whether my friend and late Rockville activist Carl Henn would be alive today if texting to 9-1-1 had been an option.”
The Commission’s tenure has been extended for an additional two years, as our public safety professionals improve emergency services across the State. Membership is comprised of a cross-section of 9-1-1 Center directors; technology and telecommunications industry representatives; cybersecurity experts; a bipartisan group of legislators; and other stakeholders to help Maryland transition to Next Generation 9-1-1 technology.
Kagan stated, “I am so grateful to our First Responders and my 9-1-1 Commission colleagues who work every day as we upgrade to ‘Next Generation 9-1-1.'”
About Senator Cheryl C. Kagan: Senator Kagan (D) is in her second term representing District 17, Gaithersburg and Rockville. She is the Vice Chair of the Education, Health, & Environmental Affairs Committee. The Maryland Association of Counties recognized Senator Kagan for her leadership on 9-1-1 and other key local government priorities in 2018. She was also named the 2018 National Leader by the Next Generation 9-1-1 Institute.