Be The Host Agency For The OTOA Stress & The Professional Telecommunicator Course

Class Description: This course will assist students in identifying the different types of stress that affect professional telecommunicators and explain the causes, signs and symptoms of these stressors. Students will differentiate between job-related and personal stress and how to recognize when someone you work with is in a "stress emergency." Students will also be armed with appropriate tools to help alleviate stress and assist law enforcement administrators with developing policies for defusing, debriefing, and follow-up care of dispatch personnel. The role of the Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) team will be reviewed as well as available resources to get help for yourself, a co-worker, a friend, or a family member.
Covered topics include many of the challenges new dispatchers face will be reviewed, including:
• Mass casualty incidents/natural disasters Officer-involved incidents
• Line-Of-Duty-Death / death within the department
• Incidents involving family or friends
• Injury/death of an infant or small child
• Hostage/SWAT situations
• Suicides
The physiological effects that constant stress has on the body will be reviewed as well as how to realistically and positively cope with the stress of the job, and protecting yourself from burnout. Students will have the opportunity to ask questions, share opinions, and express ideas. They will be armed with the necessary skills and abilities to return to their agencies to be effective and professional telecommunicators.
Day 2: A symposium, which will feature a select panel of emergency service dispatchers who have experienced extraordinary challenges and stressors in their communications centers. They will share their stories, their challenges, and their triumphs in an open forum which will invite students to inquire how they handled surreal career calls that no should have to endure.This open forum symposium will provide students with a unique insight into the trials and tribulations of some of the worst incidents handled by professional telecommunicators.

Student Equipment Needs: Note taking materials.

Hosting: Being the host agency for an OTOA training class can be a benefit to the agency with the acquisition of free training slots. These free training slots do however come with a cost. The cost is not financial but will require some work and logistics help on the part of the host agency.

  • Free training spots are directly related to the number of "paying" course attendees
  • The following items represent standard equipment needs for the OTOA Instructors to facilitate our Stress & The Professional Telecommunicator course. Other materials may be required depending on the facility and any special student needs.
  • The course host will be informed of any additional requirements, or changes to the items listed below within a reasonable time frame prior to the start of the class.

Classroom Accommodation Needs

LCD projector capable of projecting PowerPoint presentations

Screen for the projector. Screen size needs to be of sufficient size that all students can see the power point slides

Speakers for the PowerPoint presentation for audio purposes

2 to 3 large flat sturdy tables empty

Needs Assessment

Locate an area hotel for out of town attendee officers. Establish a contact person at said hotel and provide the name and phone number to the OTOA Training Operations Chief.

The host agency provides a classroom large enough to accommodate 75 - 100 students comfortably in a classroom style setting.

Marketing Assistance

Marketing the Stress & The Professional Telecommunicator course is "primarily" the responsibility of the OTOA. The OTOA will make every effort to advertise and send out marketing material for all OTOA training courses. Depending on the region, course offering or other unforeseen circumstances, training courses may encounter difficulty attaining the OTOA minimum training course attendee standard.

As the Host Agency for the Stress & The Professional Telecommunicator course, you may be asked to actively participate in the marketing campaign for the course offering. The Host Agency marketing campaign participation includes but is not limited to: LEADs Teletype to the region the course is being offered, email solicitation, phone calls, text messaging, Facebook posts, etc., etc. LEADs announcements must be sent to the OTOA Training Operations Chief.


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The OTOA is prepared to conduct the Stress & The Professional Telecommunicator course in every region in the State.

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