Plano police seek to improve service with information on residents with special needs

In an effort to improve relations with community residents who may have special needs, the Plano Police Department is asking residents to send information on those individuals to the department, so that they can “do our very best to show the compassion necessary to provide the best police service possible for everyone involved.”

In a post to the department’s Facebook page Sept. 14, Plano Police Department Lieutenant Norm Allison explained that a “critical component” to responding to emergency calls, is communication.

“A critical component to effectively responding to and handling emergency calls for service is the high level of communication that must exist between first responders and those in need of assistance,” Allison wrote. “Our understanding and compassion for the situation is paramount in building that communication from the onset of the interaction between everyone involved.”

To better assist families that may have members who have special needs, Allison wrote that the department is asking for information on those family members.

“In order to assist those families that may have a family member with special needs, we would like to have that information early on so that we can do our very best to show the compassion necessary to provide the best police service possible for everyone involved,” Allison wrote.

Those who want to provide the Plano Police Department with information are asked to fill out an online form asking for information such as height, weight, eye color, hair color, identifying marks, whether they are verbal or nonverbal.

Respondents are also asked to provide a recent digital color photo of the individual, as well as information on unique behaviors, characteristics, or sensory issues for individuals, as well as the most appropriate way for officers to approach the individual.

“We will always do our best to show compassion but this is one more tool we can utilize to provide the very best service to the citizens of Plano,” Allison wrote.