TMA and Security Systems News Announce Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Leadership Award

The Monitoring Association (TMA) and Security Systems News have partnered to create a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Leadership Award with the goal of promoting and fostering a more inclusive workforce throughout the security industry.

Today’s business world requires that businesses create, foster, and encourage diversity and inclusion in the workplace to be successful. Doing so stimulates innovation; drives better decisions; makes teams more agile; and results in better business outcomes for employees and customers. These improvements result in higher levels of employee engagement and better financial performance.

The idea for the “TMA/SSN Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Leadership Award” emerged from a small working group comprised of TMA CEO Celia T. Besore; TMA President-Elect Steve Butkovich, SSN Editor Paul Ragusa, and staff in 2021. The award will be given to TMA members who demonstrate a commitment to DEI policies and programs across their organization.

“TMA, together with Security Systems News, seeks to be an agent of change and to raise awareness of the significance and the value of DEI initiatives within the security business sector. We’re proud to introduce this new award as a means to bring this critical issue to the forefront, to inform, and to empower companies to embrace and embed these core principles,” stated Celia T. Besore, CEO, TMA.

“With workforce development one of key topics within security today, the focus and conversation has turned to building a strong company culture that attracts quality candidates and inspires them to want to stay and grow in your company,” added Paul Ragusa, editor, Security Systems News. “Creating an environment that is inclusive, open and based on a strong DEI framework is key to successfully retaining top talent, and this new award was created to recognize companies that are leaders in this area.”

The efforts and achievements must have been demonstrated through specific work with other individuals or groups, or through a specific product, initiative, innovative programs, or activities that have a visible, tangible, or measurable impact on the perception of, attitude toward, and respect for a truly inclusive environment, where individuals are valued for their talent and able to reach their full potential.

Each nominee will be asked to deploy the TMA/SSN DEI Employee Assessment Survey to their employees. The web-based assessment tool consists of approximately 40 questions covering eight facets of DEI practice within your organization. (Companies will receive only a summary report without individual responses.)

Each nominee will also be required to submit one to four “Shared Success Examples” of how their organization implements DEI-related activities in the following areas of focus, such as:

  • Workforce Diversity
  • Multicultural Outreach
  • Community Involvement

The TMA/SSN DEI Leadership Award aims to:

  • Raise industry awareness of the importance and value of being a diverse and inclusive industry.
  • Recognize TMA member organizations who have developed innovative initiatives to foster DEI efforts within their organization.
  • Initiatives may include new hiring policies; practices to create and retain diverse candidate pools; best practices for facilitating difficult dialogue; and how to create an effective diversity program within your organization.
  • Inspire business strategies and industry best practices that reach out to diverse populations.
  • Through analysis and sharing of the information obtained from the TMA/SSN DEI Employee Assessment Survey, organizations across the industry can gain valuable insights into the development or improvement of their own DEI policies and programs.

Companies interested in applying for the award, please click here to begin the nomination process.

Preliminary Technical Review Period is Now Open for the TMA-AVS-01 Alarm Validation Standard

The Monitoring Association (TMA) Standards Committee has opened a Preliminary Technical Review Period for its TMA-AVS-01 Alarm Validation Standard. Initiated in 2020, the standard provides a method of creating an alarm scoring or classification metric for unauthorized human activity detected by alarm systems that will assist law enforcement with resource allocation and Call-for-Service prioritization. The purpose of this optional review process is to allow interested stakeholders to provide feedback prior to the commencement of the official ANSI public comment period. Professionals from across the physical security industry, law enforcement, and emergency communications are asked to review and submit comments. All comments must be received through the TMA portal no later than 8:00 PM ET on Friday, June 17, 2022. All interested may access the draft document at https://tma.us/wp-content/uploads/2022/05/AVS-01-Committee-Draft-Rev-24.pdf and the TMA online comment form at https://tma.us/avs01commentform.

“This is a ground-breaking standard for stakeholders across the security and first-responder communities,” stated Glenn Schroeder, TMA Standards Committee Chair. “The TMA-AVS-01 Sub-Committee, chaired by Mark McCall, Immix Protect, and co-chaired by David Holl, Lower Allen Township (PA), and Larry Folsom, ADT, has put forth an extraordinary effort to bring this life-saving standard to fruition. At this point, we now look to other professionals who possess firsthand, working knowledge of alarm communications, emergency communication, and incident response to validate the methodology as put forth in the standard. Stakeholder input is critical.”

The TMA-AVS-01 committee will review all preliminary comments for possible inclusion in the document published for review during the ANSI public comment period. A webinar on, or about, May 25, 2022 will be held to address questions. Responders are encouraged to submit comments as early as possible.

After the committee has prepared a final draft document, TMA will submit the standard to ANSI, with the desire to initiate the 60-day ANSI Public Comment process.

If you were unable to be in attendance for TMA’s informational AVS-01 webinar on May 2, 2022, you may view a recording at https://vimeo.com/705870823/2d66afe899.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact Bryan Ginn at bginn@tma.us.

Principal Manager, Microsoft Azure Vision AI to Keynote The Monitoring Association’s 2021 Virtual OPSTech

The keynote for The Monitoring Association’s (TMA) 2021 Virtual OPSTech is Mr. Rouzbeh Aminpour, Microsoft Azure Artificial Intelligence Platform’s Computer Vision Business & Strategy Principal Manager. Aminpour will share how Azure’s Cognitive Services are enabling users to deliver breakthrough experiences through the use of industry-leading Vision AI models. Top-of-mind topics such as industry trends, use of edge and cloud infrastructures, enterprise grade and scalable model development, and responsible AI development will be the focus of his comments. TMA’s OPSTech is set to take place virtually November 30th-December 3, 2021; Aminpour is scheduled to speak on Friday, December 3, 2021 at 11:15 AM ET, and will kick-off the Technology track.

“In our business, the experience that our products and services provide for our customers – commercial and residential – is everything,” stated TMA President Morgan Hertel. “Today’s leading-edge technologies, such as AI, give security integrators and monitoring services companies the ability to deliver new, higher levels of comfort, convenience, and security. For our industry to compete successfully, service providers need to gain a strong understanding of AI and other technologies that are quickly emerging and gaining consumer interest. I’m excited to hear Mr. Aminpour’s unique perspective into AI’s potential impact on our industry.”

Aminpour is a graduate of the University of California, Irvine – The Paul Merage School of Business. Prior to joining Microsoft in 2017, he served as a senior product manager at Amazon.

TMA Adds Three New ECCs to its ASAP-to-PSAP Service

TMA welcomed its 86th, 87th, and 88th ECC to its ASAP-to-PSAP within the last two weeks.

Learn more about TMA’s ASAP-to-PSAP service.

Volusia County FL Sheriff’s Office Communication Center (FL)

The Volusia County FL Sheriff’s Office Communication Center is the 86th Emergency Communications Center (ECC) in the United States and the 9th ECC in the state of Florida to implement the Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP). Volusia County went live on Monday, May 17th with Rapid Response Monitoring, Vector Security, Security Central, Securitas, Tyco (Johnson Controls), Quick Response, ADS (Nashville), Alert 360, Guardian Protection, Affiliated Monitoring, National Monitoring Center, AT&T Digital Life, Protection One, Vivint, and Brinks Home Security. Those companies were followed by Stanley Security and ADT on Tuesday, May 18th.

Iredell County Emergency Communications Center (NC)

The Iredell County Emergency Communications Center is the 87th ECC in the United States and 10th ECC in the State of North Carolina to implement the Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP). Iredell County went live with Rapid Response and Vector Security on Thursday, May 20th followed by Quick Response, Securitas, Stanley Security, Guardian Protection, Affiliated Monitoring, Tyco (Johnson Controls), ADS Security, Vivint, Alert360, National Monitoring Center, AT&T Digital Life, Brinks Home Security, Protection One and ADT. CPI Security and Security Central will be online with the agency in the near future.

Director Miller stated, “This partnership with the public sector alarm monitoring providers will reduce phone calls by sharing information via computer. Additionally, this will improve accuracy eliminating the need for manual entry, allowing the emergency signals to be processed within seconds and shared to the emergency responders.”

Prince William County VA Public Safety Communications Center (VA)

The Prince William County VA Public Safety Communications Center (PSCC) is the 88th ECC in the United States and the 16th ECC in the state of Virginia to implement the Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP). Prince William County went live on Tuesday, May 25th with Vector Security, Rapid Response Monitoring, Stanley Security, Security Central, Richmond Alarm, National Monitoring Center, Vivint, Wegmans Security, Protection One, AT&T Digital Life, Guardian Protection, and Brinks Home Security. Those companies were followed by Securitas, Tyco (Johnson Controls), Affiliated Monitoring, and ADT on Wednesday, May 26th.

View Prince William County press release on their website announcing the ASAP implementation.

 

The Monitoring Association Welcomes its 50th FirstNet® Certificant

The Monitoring Association (TMA) is pleased to announce the addition its 50th FirstNet certificate, systems integrator Convergint Technologies, LLC. (Renton, WA). FirstNet is the nationwide public-safety wireless broadband network platform, built and deployed through a first‐of‐its‐kind public‐private partnership between the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet Authority) and AT&T. The FirstNet Authority is an independent authority of the U.S. Department of Commerce. In April 2019, under an agreement with AT&T, TMA began issuing a Certificate of Verification to qualified alarm companies for the use of FirstNet services for alarm transport communications.

For companies to obtain a who meet accepted alarm industry standards that result in the transmission of public safety related alarms from systems designed primarily to protect life and/or property (e.g. robbery, burglary, unlawful intrusion, fire, emergency medical) to a Central Station Monitoring Facility that confirms and verifies the authenticity of the alarm and notifies a Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) for relay to a public safety agency for the purpose of initiating an emergency response.

Public‐safety related alarms are critical to alerting first responders of emergencies requiring their urgent response.

As we mentioned above, for an alarm services company to apply to use FirstNet services for alarm transport communications as an extended primary user in support of public safety, it must first verify compliance through receipt of a TMA Certificate of Verification.

The alarm services company can then seek approval for eligibility to use FirstNet services by presenting the TMA Certificate of Verification to AT&T along with their contract(s) and/or service order(s), or to another alarm services company who will be providing FirstNet services from AT&T.

The TMA Certificate of Verification must be renewed every 12 months from when the initial TMA Certificate is issued.

For more information, please contact Tara Compher at 703‐660‐4913 or tcompher@tma.us.