AUSTIN, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Tens of thousands of caseworkers employed by protective services and mental health agencies across the U.S. are now equipped with AlertMedia’s SafeSignal, a groundbreaking mobile technology that provides safety and security for people working in high-risk situations. Personal safety has become a major concern for caseworkers at agencies nationwide, as incidents of violence against them are becoming increasingly common. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 48% of all non-fatal injuries from assaults and violent acts in an occupational setting took place in health care and social services settings.
The patented SafeSignal mobile app from AlertMedia works in combination with a tether inserted into a smartphone to provide a “zero-button” distress signal. When the tether is disconnected, even from a locked phone, an audible alarm is activated and the distress signal, along with critical details about the SafeSignal user’s location and situation, is relayed to local law enforcement. Caseworkers never have to unlock their phone, search for an app, or push a single button to get an emergency response.
“Our staff interacts in the community in challenging, high-risk situations. We were looking for a solution that would give our workers an instant connection to law enforcement, but also an increased level of safety confidence,” said Penelope Doherty, Texas DFPS Worker Safety Support Manager. “After a harrowing close call, we needed something that works without pressing any buttons, on a locked phone, and with monitoring team support. As a result, SafeSignal has been deployed to our nearly 9,000 caseworkers statewide.”
Several other family protective services agencies across the country, including the states of Kansas, New Mexico, West Virginia and Vermont, are now protecting their workers with SafeSignal, while dozens of other states are evaluating the solution. The AlertMedia emergency communications platform and SafeSignal app are preventing crime and violence before it happens, improving law enforcement response times, and reducing costs related to employee turnover.
“The inherent risks of child protection work follow our staff far beyond the doors of our offices and at any time of the day; with SafeSignal we were able to give our workers a tangible safety resource that would enable them to have fingertip access to help no matter the circumstance. SafeSignal’s monitoring team enabled us to provide 24/7 coverage to our workforce without any increase in workload and with expertise that we would not have been able to match,” said Shannon Morton, Staff Safety Coordinator for Vermont Department for Children and Families.
A survey by the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees found that 90% of child welfare workers experienced verbal threats, 30% experienced physical attacks, and 13% had been threatened with weapons. The patented SafeSignal app and tether was developed with these types of workers and situations in mind, where an attack or other conditions would make it impossible for a worker to unlock a phone, or find and tap buttons on a screen.
“The unfortunate reality is that people being assaulted don’t have time to call 911 or even press a single button. And even if they could make a call, it’s very difficult under extreme circumstances for them to communicate their location and other details,” said Brian Cruver, founder and CEO of AlertMedia. “SafeSignal users can get help without pressing a button, without even looking at their device. And our monitoring team has all the location details and situation information to coordinate a response with local law enforcement.”
AlertMedia keeps people safe, informed, and connected. The company’s patented SafeSignal technology gives workers in dangerous situations both a powerful deterrent and a coordinated response from law enforcement. As the fastest growing company in the emergency communications industry, AlertMedia is helping organizations around the world improve their critical notifications, protect their people, and reduce risk. For more information, please call (800) 826-0777 or visit alertmedia.com.