Staff & Duties
Located in New Castle, Henry County Emergency Services 911 dispatches for 3 police departments, the Henry County Sheriff's Office, 6 Town Marshals, the New Castle Fire Department and 15 Township fire and 3 EMS agencies. The Center is staffed with 9 full time and 15 part-time professional telecommunicators, along with an IT department.
Henry County is located in the East Central part of Indiana, just East of Indianapolis. With a coverage area of 222 square miles and a population of nearly 49,000, our center receives phone calls and dispatches Emergency service personnel to law, fire and EMS issues. The County Seat is New Castle.
Text to 911
In June, 2017 Henry County began accepting inbound text messages to 911. Outbound texting had started earlier the same year. With the outbound text capabilities, we are able to text the number and have been successful in getting an answer nearly 100% of the time. With inbound texting, we are able to connect with the deaf and hard-of-hearing community. In addition, we have received texts from callers that could not speak due to the situation they were in.
Communications staff receives hours of continuing education each year to maintain the highest level of professional ability. All dispatchers receive approximal 60 hours of In-Service training and receive Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) certification in Public Safety Telecommunicator, Emergency Medical and Law and Fire Dispatching.
We will hold ourselves accountable to the highest level of honesty and ethical conduct, dedicating our operation to serve the community and emergency service personnel of Henry County in a courteous, respectful, and professional manner. We seek continuous advancement in our personal skills to ensure that we will always provide capable and professional law enforcement services without partiality or discrimination.
The mission of Henry County Emergency Services 911 Central Dispatch Center is to provide professional, efficient, effective, communication to safeguard the lives and property of the residents, visitors, and all emergency service personnel within our community.
The mission shall be conducted and accomplished by operating a state of the art, combined police, fire, and EMS emergency communications center which serves to receive emergency calls to 911 and dispatch the appropriate agencies to provide assistance.
Prior to 1991, basic 911 service existed only in the New Castle area, in primarily Henry Township. The remaining areas in Henry County had no 911 service. Basic 911 would allow the caller to reach the New Castle Police Department by dialing 911 but no data, like caller information, and or location would appear in the dispatch area. During this time, representatives from both the City of New Castle and Henry County Government embarked on a 3-year campaign to obtain Enhanced 911 for the entire County.
In September of 1991, a single Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) Enhanced 911 center was opened and Enhanced 911 service was implemented for all Henry County Citizens. During the 3-year 911 campaign, discussions took place between city and county government officials to combine dispatch duties and responsibilities to provide a more cost effective and efficient service.
The single PSAP joint dispatch center was housed at the New Castle Police Department for the first 12 years. The 911 Center dispatches for the New Castle Police and Fire Department, as well as the New Castle-Henry County EMS. The 911 Center also dispatches for the Henry County Sheriff's Office, Four Town Marshals and 15 Township Fire Departments.
In 2003 the single PSAP joint Dispatch Center was moved to the basement of the newly constructed Henry County Justice Center. The move included an upgrade to all the equipment in the 911 center. At the time of its opening, the dispatch center at the Justice Center was phase 3 compliant with state-of-the-art technology.
Over the past years 911 technology advances have taken place within this industry which will need to be addressed in the near future.