Published 30th November 2016, 10:16am
Before police, fire or emergency medical services responders, it’s the voice of a 911 dispatcher that many people hear after they have witnessed or been the victim of a tragic or violent situation.
Emergency dispatchers are the first of first responders. They quickly collect all information required by the responding units, and often calmly provide lifesaving instructions over the phone.
For 911 dispatcher Natalie “Angie” Wright, with the Department of Public Safety Communications, it is a job she knows all too well.
“I have worked at the department for five years,” she said. “I love what I do; it’s very rewarding knowing I get to help people in need on a daily basis.”
On 12 September 2016 Mrs. Wright’s dispatch skills and instincts were put to the test when she answered a 911 call from a frantic caller whose family member was unconscious and unable to breathe.
“I quickly determined that the person needed immediate help, so I began giving instructions to the caller on how to perform cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR),” she explained. “Within minutes of performing CPR, the family member began coughing and slowly regained consciousness.”
Mrs. Wright then continued to monitor the call until help arrived on scene.
Now, the Ministry of Home Affairs has rewarded her efforts with the coveted title of the Chief Officer’s Choice. This award highlights the outstanding efforts of civil servants across core government, and the high standards they perpetuate amongst their peers.
“I’m very happy I was chosen, and I feel honoured and proud to represent my team,” she said.
Director of the Department of Public Safety Communications Julian Lewis said Mrs. Wright is an integral part of the public safety team and well deserving of the award.
“The skills and commitment Mrs. Wright brings to the table each day are truly impeccable,” he explained. “As a department, we looked at Mrs. Wright’s performance assessments over the years, and her professionalism stood out most of all with her ability to just adapt to whatever we call on her to do. I was proud to nominate her for the Chief Officer’s Award for September 2016.”
The Ministry of Home Affairs Acting Deputy Chief Officer Michael Ebanks added, “Mrs. Wright has a strong desire to serve the community, and I know with her positive attitude and strong work ethic she will continue to be a great asset to the Department of Public Safety Communications.”