“We started from a few but then it evolved into a complex [disaster response unit],” says Emmanuel Jaldon, Chief Operating Officer of the Central 911 in Davao City.
According to Jaldon, the Central 911 started as a public/private initiative at first which is the same thing Salonga Center wants to achieve for Dumaguete City by partnering with non-government and local government representatives. “[We] want to create a government-based call center, but responders can [also] be non-government,” says Salonga Center Director and College of Law Dean, Atty. Mikhail Maxino.
Since covering the whole province would be too huge for now, the proposed 911 is planned to cover Dumaguete City and nearby cities and municipalities.
How 911 works
According to Jaldon, the Central 911 has two response levels: 1) the “business as usual” response which includes medical cases and accidents and 2) the disaster category response which includes natural calamities.
In the “business as usual” response, they merely take the calls and dispatches the appropriate government units. Once a call is done, it gets stored in their data-base. When they receive multiple calls in the same area, this triggers the hit map and alarms them to send more police officers. The hit map is also being used to analyze and foresee patterns in crime and other needs of the community to help the local government in decision-making.
In the disaster category response, they have reached beyond Davao City to help in major natural calamities like typhoon Pablo and Yolanda.
According to Jaldon, it doesn’t need to start big. In their case, it took them a year and a half to finally set up the system and only had a few government units to dispatch. Now, they’ve added a K-9 and a fire unit. They’re also planning to establish a training facility for their disaster response employees this year. He says that Davaoeños can’t imagine the city without the Central 911 with how it has grown.
The Call 911 Meeting was held last March 3, 2016 at the Dr. Jovito R. Salonga Center for Law and Development with Emmanuel Jaldon, Chief Operating Officer of the Davao Central 911 as speaker.