Law enforcement officers, fire service members, and EMS personnel – who are on the front lines protecting their communities every day – will have the opportunity to access and use the FirstNet network once operational. The National Sheriffs’ Association (NSA) is one of the key groups that represents law enforcement personnel.
The NSA serves as the primary voice of sheriffs and deputies throughout the country and has more than 20,000 members within both sheriffs’ departments and police departments. The NSA provides law enforcement training and information resources to its members, and NSA staff represent members in front of government agencies and lobby for NSA legislative priorities. In addition to this ongoing work, the NSA has developed several new programs such as Law Enforcement Supply Pro, a technology solution that enables sheriffs to acquire necessary supplies more economically and efficiently, and a variety of workshops for its members. The NSA promotes activities and provides legislative updates through its website, as well as on Twitter and Facebook.
The NSA is an important partner for FirstNet and member of FirstNet’s Public Safety Advisory Committee (PSAC). Retired Sheriff Larry Amerson represents the NSA on the PSAC. He spoke with FirstNet recently about his enthusiastic support for the FirstNet network and the ways it will improve public safety response throughout the country. “By giving that information to the people that need it in the fastest way possible we will save lives. Information makes all the difference in the world. With FirstNet, we’ll be able to get that information faster and easier,” says Amerson. Amerson has over 42 years of law enforcement experience and provides the PSAC with valuable input from the sheriffs’ perspective.
In addition to his leadership in the NSA, Sheriff Rich Stanek of Hennepin County, Minnesota serves on FirstNet’s Board, providing the Board with valuable perspective from an officer and public safety leader on the needs of law enforcement with regards to the FirstNet network.
As a result of Sheriff Stanek’s roles on the NSA Executive and Homeland Security Committees, the association has been instrumental in helping to educate its membership about the benefits of the FirstNet network through, for example, conference sessions, committee meetings, webinars, and Sheriff and Deputy magazine articles – the official magazine of the NSA.
One of the best ways for members of FirstNet to educate the future users of the FirstNet network is through discussions and partnerships with the associations that represent these users. FirstNet staff looks forward to attending the 2017 NSA Winter Conference and meeting with sheriffs from across the country from February 4-7, 2017 in Washington, DC.
The FirstNet network will provide law enforcement with mission‐critical, high‐speed data services (as well as voice capabilities) to supplement the voice capabilities of today’s Land Mobile Radio (LMR) networks. The FirstNet network will enable more efficient, safer, and coordinated responses to public safety incidents. Just as smartphones have changed personal lives, devices and applications created for the FirstNet network will ultimately enhance the way law enforcement officers work.
To hear more please view the following video: