The Police Department has 10 full time dispatchers and 3 part time dispatchers. One dispatcher is assigned to Records. The dispatcher's years of service range from 2 years to 32 years. Over half of the dispatchers have college degrees. The dispatchers have amassed numerous training certificates, including ones in the following areas:
- 911 Supervision & 911 Liability
- Active Shooter Incident Communications
- Communications Training Officer Certification
- Computer Aided Dispatch and Records Software
- Crisis Intervention Team
- Critical Incident Dispatching
- Dispatch Hostage Negotiations
- Internet Protocol and 9-1-1 Call Taking
- LEADS Messenger Training
- National Incident Management System
- NCIC Investigative Tools
- Non-Emergency Call Handling
- Ohio Amber Alert Conference
- Ohio LEADS and Computerized Criminal History
- OnStar Public Safety Training
- Suicide Intervention
A dispatcher is the first person you will speak to when you call the Police Department. Dispatchers are trained to ask questions, so they can determine what type of response is needed (how many officers to send, what the problem is and whether the call needs a police response, or can be effectively handled another way).
Kent Police Department dispatches police for the city and dispatches Kent Fire Department on fire and EMS calls. The Kent Fire Deparment provides fire and EMS service to the city, Kent State University, Franklin Township and Sugar Bush Knolls. The dispatchers monitor the city's service band radio frequency, which city maintenance workers use. The dispatchers also have a scanner, so they can monitor surrounding area police departments.
The dispatchers are also Deputy Clerks of the Portage County Municipal Court. Being a Deputy Clerk allows the dispatchers to clerk official court paperwork, prepare court documents and accept bond money on behalf of the court. The dispatchers also bond out prisoners, which entails explaining the bond paperwork and witnessing the prisoner sign the bond.
In addition to dispatching, the dispatchers must handle walk-in traffic (people who come into the lobby requesting copies of reports, asking for directions, or wanting to make a report). The dispatchers do data entry for the department as well, entering ticket information and accident information into the Records Management System, process and enter warrants and TPOs into the state-wide computer system and compile reports for the city and the FBI.