The Help Button Is Only A Kiosk Away

Great job by the ANAR (Aid to Children and Adolescents at Risk) Foundation in Europe to aid abused children.

The ad is hidden from adults, and the message is only visible to children–based on their height and angle of viewing.

To the abused child, they see: “If someone hurts you, phone us and we’ll help” with a number to call to get help in an anonymous and confidential way.

To the accompanying adult, they see: “Sometimes, child abuse is only visible to the child suffering it.”

This is a great reminder to adults to behave themselves in how they treat children, and a way to get critical assistance information to children discreetly.

Learning from this, I’d love to see a similar campaign here in the U.S. to help child abuse victims, as well as other variations to help abused women, human trafficking victims, and others–by finding technological innovations to help them get the message in ways that their abusers don’t necessarily detect and which can’t easily be blocked from their victims.

Perhaps, one way to do this is to widely deploy emergency, push button, help kiosks where victims can easily reach out for assistance, where otherwise they would have no way to call for help–such as when their phones, money, passports, and so on have been confiscated.

Their are a lot of people hurting out there and we need to get to them to tell them that there is help available, that they will be protected (and mean it), and that they can easily reach out and we’ll be right there for them.

Now that’s an easy button to really help people. 😉

App Provides Push-Button Emergency Help

Crimepush

An important new free iPhone/Android App called CrimePushhit the market today.

It allows you or a loved one at the push of a button to report a crime.

Once you download the app, you can store your name, phone number, and address (so it’s there in case something G-d forbid happens).

Further, you can set the App to report crimes with your information or anonymously and with or without your GPS location.

Then you have a screen that provides you with 9 options for the various types of crime or emergency:

– Theft
– Threat
– Altercation
– Sexual Abuse
– Medical
– Accident
– Vandalism
– Drugs
– Harassment

Click on theft, as an example, the date and time are pre-populated for you, and you have a free text area to describe the incident, and the options to add a photo, video, or audio.

Then simply hit the “push” button to submit to the authorities.

My understanding is that more enhancements to the CrimePush App are in the works such as the ability to shake your phone to activate CrimePush, so the police can find you quickly through GPS.

CrimePush has the potential to help a lot of people and ultimately actually help to reduce crime by having people report instead of ignore, and provide information to the authorities faster, more accurately, and more comprehensively using the various multimedia options to capture the crime and the criminals.

(Source Photo: here)

CPR by iPhone

Great new iPhone App by the San Ramon Fire Department called FireDepartment.
This life-saving iPhone app notifies citizens trained in CPR (that have opted-in) of a cardiac emergency occurring in a public area near them.
An article in Government Technology (May 2011) explains that citizens can “start administering CPR before first responders arrive at the scene.
The problem it addresses is that generally it takes about 7 minutes from a heart attack to death, and it can take about just as long for rescue crews to reach victims.
So, if there are qualified people in the vicinity that can help in the the crucial minutes in between, they can literally save lives.
This is how it works:
1) Emergency dispatchers receive a call for help.
2) They enter “CPR assistance needed” into the dispatch system. 
3) First responders AND local citizens with the CPR app (within 500 feet of the emergency) are alerted.  
4) Location-based technology in the iPhone directs you to not only where the assistance is needed but also to where the nearest automated external defibrillator (AED) can be found. 
“If you’re at Starbucks and next door at the deli someone goes down, you’re getting a notification.”
Currently, the app covers San Ramon County’s 155 miles, but there are plans to make it available as open source code to other jurisdictions across the country as well. 
The app was developed with the help of Fire Chief Richard Price who previously was a software engineer and is bringing a new technology focus to life-saving emergency response. 
There are also iPhone apps that walk you through performing CPR, such as CPR-Choking and CPR Hero.  
Hopefully, we never need these apps, but it’s good to know people and information are there to help just an iPhone app away. 

>Evolving Capabilities To Meet The Times

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http://abcnews.go.com/assets/player/walt2.6/flash/SFP_Walt_2_65.swf

Great question raised by ABC News on why can’t we contact 911 using texting (except for Black Hawk County, Iowa–population 130,000!).

I would extend on the question and suggest that we be able to contact 911 by any number of ubiquitous technologies whether texting, instant messaging, email, or even potentially social media sites (e.g. 911 on Facebook).

Frankly, if someone is in trouble, they shouldn’t have to get to a phone anymore, but rather they should simply be able to contact emergency services from wherever and whatever they are doing as long as they are connected–whether by desktops, laptops, tablets, and smartphones, help should be just a message away.

Moreover, by capturing photos, videos, and voice, we can send a more multi-media, data-rich stream of information to 911, enabling them to better assess and respond to the situation.

We owe it to both those in need of help and those emergency service providers to link them through more types of communications services and more information-rich media.

I believe that the excuse that people will make more mistakes texting doesn’t ring true in an information economy where Americans send 5 1/2 billion text messages a day.

In fact, a mistaken text is better than no text!

The key is to evolve our capabilities and not stay static in 50 year old technology, just because.