LAUREL, Md., March 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Each year since 1974, the Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce recognizes the police and law enforcement officers, firefighters, rescue personnel and Department of Corrections employees who dedicate their lives to protecting the people and property of Maryland's most populated county. In addition to honoring individual members of the public safety community for their valor and service, the Chamber also recognizes a private-sector business for its role in helping a public safety agency transform and advance its mission to meet 21st-century challenges.
This year's recipient of the Public Safety Corporate Vital Link Award is Verizon. The company was nominated by Montgomery County Sheriff Darren Popkin for its contributions and partnerships with public safety and for its support of the Montgomery County Family Justice Center.
Mike Maiorana, Verizon Wireless regional president noted, "As the son of a police officer, I have extreme respect and personal understanding of the sacrifices you who are charged with ensuring our safety and security make every day. We're proud to put our technologies and solutions to work for Montgomery County to help keep citizens safe."
Since the Montgomery County Family Justice Center (MCFJC) first opened in 2009, Verizon has contributed innovative technologies to help enhance victim safety and improve communications. Among the technology solutions that Verizon has donated to the MCFJC is videoconferencing equipment that connects domestic violence victims who visit the Center with judges in the county courthouse. As a result of this technology, victims have been able to receive protective orders more quickly and from the safety, security and comfort of the center, thus reducing the number of places a victim has to travel to for services and eliminating the possibility of having to face her abuser in court. The MCFJC reports that this technology has saved lives and transformed the way the court system handles the issuing of initial Protective Orders.
The contributions from Verizon were funded, in part, through the company's HopeLine® Phone Recycling Program, which collects used cell phones to be recycled or sold and donates the proceeds in the form of cash grants and pre-paid wireless phones to advocacy groups for use by survivors. Since 2001, HopeLine has collected more than 10 million phones for recycling; kept over 200 tons of electronic wastes and batteries out of landfills; provided 151,000 free phones to victims needing a lifeline; and awarded nearly $18 million in cash grants to local non-profit organizations. Additionally, funding to support Center programs has been provided by the Verizon Foundation.
In addition to donating technology to enhance the safety of domestic violence victims, Verizon partners with companies that provide innovative solutions to the public safety community like Golden-i, a lightweight, self-contained mobile wireless computing and communications device made by Kopin that relies on the Verizon Wireless 4G LTE network to provide a hands-free interface and communication for police departments, paramedics and firefighters to help save lives. Golden-i uses infrared technology to provide police officers night vision, to help paramedics address patient medical conditions at night, and to assist firefighters see through dense smoke, view schematics, see biometrics of fellow squad members, and stream or receive video to and from a command center.
Blueforce Tactical (BTAC) is another innovation that uses the power of the Verizon Wireless 4G LTE network to help public safety, emergency medical, national security and government agencies charged with protecting critical infrastructure. The solution uses situational awareness and location-based services both outside and inside of structures, along with personally attached or unattended sensor data, to simultaneously permit secure information exchange between wireless devices and networks.
Verizon is committed to delivering powerful solutions to enhance how we communicate, live, and work. For more information on Verizon's public safety solutions, visit: http://www22.verizon.com/powerfulanswers/.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless operates the nation's largest 4G LTE network and largest, most reliable 3G network. The company serves 98.2 million retail customers, including 92.5 million retail postpaid customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with more than 73,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ) and Vodafone (LSE, NASDAQ: VOD). For more information, visit www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.
SOURCE Verizon Wireless