West commends the New York City Council for the recent passage of the new law, “Requiring direct telephone access to 911 service.” The passage of this law ensures that New Yorkers using multi-line telephone systems (MLTS) in certain businesses and City agencies have easy, direct access to 9-1-1 service in an emergency.
The law is modeled on Kari’s Law, so-named in honor of Kari Hunt whose tragic passing in 2013 alerted the nation to the dangers of requiring a dialing prefix to access 9-1-1. Simply, this new NYC law will allow users of these MLTS to dial 9-1-1 without requiring any prefix, post-fix or trunk access code. In addition to the direct dialing provision, the law also requires that on-site notifications be issued when 9-1-1 is dialed and that calls must be directly delivered to the appropriate Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP).
Championed by New York City Council member Elizabeth Crowley, the bill passed unanimously on May 24, 2017 and was signed into law by Mayor Bill de Blasio on May 30, 2017. Its provisions take immediate effect for MLTS installed on or after this date, and come into force as of May 1, 2019 for MLTS installed prior to the passage of this law.
Numerous versions of Kari’s Law have passed or are pending in various states and counties across the nation. A version of Kari’s Law is also in front of the US Senate for approval, signaling the importance of 9-1-1 access for all citizens across America.
For more information on the law and its impact on your business, West recommends you consult with your legal advisors for guidance.