York County 911 offers higher salaries to attract emergency dispatchers

York County 911 is holding a recruitment drive on Saturday, May 14 to fill open call and dispatch attendant positions.

Pay for 911 dispatchers starts at $17.04 an hour, and those working night shifts will get a $1 an hour raise, according to a flyer sent out by the York County Department of Emergency Services. . Weekend shift dispatchers receive an increase of $1.50 per hour. For every training or skill set a dispatcher completes, they will receive a $1 per hour raise.

York County Emergency Management Office External Affairs Officer Ted Czech said there would be four recruiting sessions, starting at the top of the hour. During these sessions, candidates will get job information, tour 911 facilities, and then complete a pre-employment assessment.

Czech said the pre-employment assessment, which tests a candidate’s ability to acquire the skills needed for the position, must be completed before candidates are considered for employment.

Besides salary, Czech said being a call taker or 911 dispatcher comes with several benefits, including medical and retirement benefits.

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Czech acknowledged that working for the emergency services can be very stressful work and there are several assistance programs available to help 911 employees.

“To alleviate/relieve stress, dispatchers/responders have access to a quiet room for instant decompression on a bad call if they need time to collect their thoughts. In addition to the Employee Assistance Program ( counselling), we have access to crisis stress counselors for high stress events,” he said. “They also learn many stress management techniques during the stress academy. ‘dispatch.”

Over the past few years, the department has struggled with staff shortages and staff turnover. Czech said this was partly because the job did not offer competitive wages, but a raise was implemented in October 2021.

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At that time, there were 36 employees at the 911 call center. Cech said he had 66 budgeted positions. In October, he said 30 more staff had been hired and would start soon, but they still needed 15 more staff to be full.

Call attendants and dispatchers work 12-hour shifts, two days in a row, with the next two days off. With an extra day, employees are working shifts on what would be their third day off this week, but the need for extra days should disappear when new hires start taking calls, Czech said.

“It takes a special person to do this job. You have to have a desire to improve your community and help people,” he said. “It’s a job, a vocation. And that can be very rewarding for the right people.

In addition to staffing issues, a former employee of the center last month filed a lawsuit against the county, alleging that she had suffered discrimination and retaliation at work from a supervisor before leaving. to be wrongfully dismissed.

It is county policy not to comment on pending litigation, Czech said in April.

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Recruitment will take place at the 911 call center at 120 Davies Dr., York. You must have a high school diploma or GED to apply.

For more information, call Rob Morgan at 717-840-2908 or email him at [email protected]

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