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Cape Coral Police Department is in need of 911 dispatchers

Posted: 10:18 PM, Feb 27, 2019
Updated: 2019-02-27 22:18:04-05

CAPE CORAL, Fla. -- Several police departments and sheriff offices in Southwest Florida are trying to fill one of their most important positions, a dispatcher.

911 Dispatchers are there when we need them most. They are the first person to help you in a time of crisis.

The Collier, Charlotte and Lee County Sheriff Offices said they are looking to hire more dispatchers, but they couldn’t give an exact number at this time.

Punta Gorda, Fort Myers and Naples Police Departments have at least one position open.

At the Cape Coral Police Department, they need to fill six dispatch positions which is about 20% of their staff.

They are critical to our mission, they give us all the information we need,” said Master Corporal Phil Mullen, Cape Coral Police Department.

When you are someone’s lifeline, Mullen said the job can be stressful.

“You’re hearing people when a loved one may be passed away or when there’s violence ongoing at the time, so their jobs are extremely difficult,” said Mullen.

Mullen said the shortage is not affecting response time for emergencies.

However, while they are short, dispatchers at the Cape Coral Police Department are having to work overtime, skip lunch breaks and pick up extra shifts.

“We always need to have these spots manned so those seconds matter and get you the help you need,” Mullen said.

He said seconds count as a dispatcher because it can mean life or death in some cases.

“If you need the police, a victim of an ongoing crime or if your house is on fire and you need the fire department,” Mullen said. “If you’re having a medical emergency, you need medics there as fast as they can get there.”

The police department said 12-hour shifts, working overnight and holidays are some of the challenges with this job and why they are short staffed.
“It’s a tough job but it’s a very rewarding one,” Mullen said.

He said there’s nothing more awarding than saving a life.

Once someone passes the background checks and is hired as a dispatcher, they don’t start right away. They actually have to go through several months of training, pass a test and get their certifications.

Click here if you would like to apply to be a dispatcher at the Cape Coral Police Department.

Click here if you would like to apply to be a dispatcher at the Fort Myers Police Department.

Click here if you would like to apply to be a dispatcher at the Punta Gorda Police Department.

Click here if you would like to apply to be a dispatcher at the Naples Police Department.

Click here if you would like to apply to be a dispatcher at the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.

Click here if you would like to apply to be a dispatcher at the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office.

Click here if you would like to apply to be a dispatcher at the Collier County Sheriff’s Office.