Crisis phone and $ 1 million grant to Lehigh Valley emergency services

Emergency responders in Lehigh Valley are receiving an influx of supplies and other support.

Earlier this month, Northampton County Council voted 9-0 to give $ 1 million in grants to fire and emergency medical services.

Allentown this week announced a $ 53,000 grant from the US Department of Justice “to support the purchase of crisis-assisting technology and portable speed-monitoring devices,” according to a city ​​press release.

Northampton County Grants continues a program started in 2020 with revenue from table games.

The county’s Department of Community and Economic Development reports reviewing 236 applications for the new round of grants, reduced to 24 grants of up to $ 50,000 each.

“Our fire departments and EMS organizations are essential to protecting public health and safety,” said Lamont McClure, Northampton County Manager, in a statement announcing the funding. “These grants help provide our first responders with the tools and equipment they need to serve the people of Northampton County.”

County Councilor John Cusick, ahead of the Oct. 7 vote to approve the grants, said the effort should help local volunteer organizations that have faced coronavirus restrictions on events such as fundraising breakfasts funds to assist with the purchase of necessary equipment and vehicles, capital improvements and training.

“Being able to transfer this money to our first responders, especially volunteers in some of our small boroughs and rural areas, is absolutely critical due to the loss they have suffered and their inability to fundraise over the past year. year and a half, “he said.

The complete list of grants awarded appears below. Click here to see itbecause it may not display on all platforms.

In Allentown, the federal grant will be used to purchase a state-of-the-art, $ 33,000 emergency phone “for use by trained professional crisis negotiators so they can communicate with people in crisis from one location. remote and in a controlled environment, “according to the liberation of the city.

It replaces an outdated 2007 model, said Police Chief Charles Roca, who noted in the statement that his department has responded to more than 40 crisis situations in the past year and a half “involving individuals who are either suicidal or barricaded “. … The Rescue Phone can establish communications during these tense situations and will be used for monthly training.

The balance of the federal grant will go towards the purchase of two solar-powered license plate readers and speed signs, officials from Allentown said.

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Kurt Bresswein can be reached at [email protected].

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