We have 911, Amber Alerts, and Silver Alerts for missing people.
However, cities lack cohesive communications for missing pets, car pooling, neighborhood watches, and other high-impact community issues, many of which aren't quite emergencies, yet important enough that minutes matter.
Cities also lack a single streamlined channel for people to report mobility issues for potholes, plowing, or transit, where individuals often hunt around for:
* phone numbers such as child support
* web pages such as traffic court
* mobile apps such as parking
Very often, folks simply give up or fail to find the services they need.
We propose a single text hotline for key city services as the first step towards enhancing unified citywide access to affiliated and primary municipal services.
For example, the search for a lost pets is patchwork at best -- the Humane Society, social media postings, and for a few lucky few, a television or radio spot, where for a pet, every minute counts.
By deploying a text hotline, and an associated speed dial shortlist, we can quickly streamlines sharing info about a missing pet with community to:
- radio and television media
- pet stores and pet rescues
- neighborhood platforms
- local law enforcement
- local businesses
Can any city service be made accessible?
Yes! Specifically, a text shortcode, such as INDYUP or MYINDY, can provide automated and live support for any municipal service, up to and including health and human services that may require additional measures of privacy, and where those text requests can be routed to an existing 211 provider or if need be to a 911 center.
Is this just broadcast or scheduled alerts?
The primary initial use case is for facilitating interactive lookup of city services and to provide streamlined access to municipal staff and personnel to communicate with residents and visitors about city services.
If desired, the text hotline can also be used to provide scheduled updates, urgent city wide or localized information, or other automated notifications, up to and including compliance and court date reminders.
What about additional messaging channels?
Although text messaging would be the focus during the pilot phase, we can add support for platforms such as WhatsApp if follow-on funding is available.
What about multi-lingual support?
We can provision automated translations on demand for customer support representatives &/or multi-lingual automated response messages can be saved in our system.
Emojis? MMS (audio, photos, video)?
Yes and yes.
What most excites us about this project?
From our founder -- I remember searching city blue pages in physical phone books. I remember searching far too many phone books on active duty. Fast forward and for all the apps and search engines, it's often amazing how long it takes to find something as seemingly straightforward as the location of a local DMV office, or the hours of that office.
We at Jingle want give that time back to the citizens of Indianapolis, and frankly, to make it easier to access and get around the city, and for those in need, to make sure that they can get the info and help that they need quickly, even if that's as simple as everyone showing up for their court date on time, and most especially if we can help a few more pets find their way home.