Why the Police Dispatch Quality Award Matters to Public Safety

The annual PDQ Award signifies the security industry’s commitment to reducing unnecessary requests for service by the police.

There is no shortage of awards, plaques or commendations in the world, so it is fair to ask what is the significance of the Police Dispatch Quality (PDQ) Award? Why bother having it? What benefit does it have beyond the recognition for those who receive it?

The award was created in 2005 and is sponsored by the Security Industry Alarm Coalition (SIAC), Security Sales & Integration, the Partnership for Priority Verified Alarm Response (PPVAR) and the IQ Certification Program.

Certainly, the winner benefits from the industry recognition and the marketing opportunities conferring the award makes available.

“Everybody wants to work for a winner. We used the award to congratulate our hard-working team whose dedication to our business and customers allowed us to win,” says Timothy Creenan, owner and CEO of Amherst Alarm, Inc., which earned the award in 2016. “We include mention of the award in our recruiting efforts as well. People like to be associated with winners and put a great value on awards.

“Mentioning the award in a sales presentation provides a perfect opportunity to further differentiate the value proposition of working with our company,” Creenan continues.

But there is another important industry-wide benefit that may not be as apparent and is equally important. The award signifies our industry’s commitment to reducing unnecessary requests for service by the police. The award and the publicity it receives in SSI can be shared with law enforcement leaders who need to know that our industry shares a commitment to respecting the value of their officers’ time and their department’s resources.

While the SIAC team discusses these issues with law enforcement leaders at the local, national and state level on a continuing basis, the media coverage, including descriptions of specific steps industry leading companies are taking to address false alarms is an important and credible message that we are true partners when it comes to life safety and law enforcement issues.

The winner’s stories provide specifics on how our industry is working to reduce the need for police services, through enhanced call verification (ECV), customer training and partnering with local law enforcement leaders.

You only need to read your local newspaper or watch television to know that these are incredibly challenging times for the men and women in law enforcement. While there is no question that reforms are needed, in many instances it remains true that law enforcement leaders today are faced with multiple conflicting roles and communities are divided on what their role should be going forward.

These are not challenging times for the faint of heart. By working directly with local public safety leaders as well as at the state and national level with the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), the Major Cities Chiefs Association (MCCA) and the National Sheriffs’ Association (NSA), SIAC is sending the message that our industry is committed to being a vital part of public safety now and in the future.

Stan Martin is Executive Director of the Security Industry Alarm Coalition (SIAC).

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