We have received news that San Jose, CA has recently repealed its Verified Response policy for emergency dispatch. The city will now respond normally to a dispatch request from a central monitoring station. This is great news for customers in San Jose who depend on reliable dispatch.
For anyone who does not know, Verified Response is a policy in which a dispatching center will not send out emergency police response unless a crime is confirmed visually or audibly. The purpose of these policies is to reduce false alarms and to save costs by not sending out potentially unnecessary dispatch.
As a monitoring service provider, Alarm Grid is opposed to Verified Response policies. We want all our customers to receive reliable emergency dispatch in the event of a potential crisis. We understand the need to limit false alarms and not waste the time and resources of our valued local law enforcement. That being said, we take several steps to eliminate false alarms with our central station partner, Criticom.
Some of the actions that Criticom takes to reduce false alarms include check-in calls, false alarm passwords, and allowing end users to place their systems on test mode. A Verified Response policy only makes it more difficult for an end user to get the help that they need in a timely manner, and it does not sufficiently reduce occurrences of false alarms.
The truth is that the vast majority of false alarms come from a very small percentage of overall alarm users. Putting burdensome requirements in place before allowing the authorities to properly respond and failing to work directly with the end users and alarm companies that create false alarms leads to a less safe environment for all.
We are sure that our San Jose customers will appreciate this action, and they will enjoy greater peace of mind in knowing that Criticom Monitoring Services will now be able to successfully request emergency police dispatch to their homes and businesses. Additionally, we have noticed a trend that many Southwestern US Cities have started reversing Verified Response policies that were all put into effect somewhat recently. Alarm Grid will provide updates as we receive more information.
If you receive alarm monitoring service in an area where a Verified Response policy is still in place, there are some actions you can take to ensure that emergency help is sent out during a crisis. The best option is to install security cameras or use image sensor modules to provide a visual look-in for any activity at your home or business. End users might also consider using panels with a built-in camera, such as a Honeywell Lyric Controller or a Qolsys IQ Panel 2.
Remember that when using cameras, you must be able to respond to calls from the central station and let them know that any given alarm is legitimate. If you cannot do this, then you will not receive the authority response you expect. For these users, the best option is often to use a local guard service that handles the dispatch and alerts the local police after they arrive on the scene and confirm that a crime is taking place. Alarm Grid customers in Verified Response areas can contact us about arranging for a local guard service to protect their homes and businesses.
We encourage every Alarm Grid customer to check with their local jurisdiction to find out if any Verified Response policies are in effect in their area. If you have any questions about Verified Response policies, you can always reach out to us. We are available via email at email@example.com. You may also call us at (888) 818-7728 during our regular business hours of 9am to 8pm EST M-F. We look forward to hearing from you!