• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
2m 8s

Safety patrol goes 24/7 with new funds

By KTVA Alaska 12:57 PM November 21, 2013

Assembly earmark of $515,000 brings new vans, more shifts for public safety program

ANCHORAGE – In passing a $467 million budget, the Anchorage Assembly earmarked more than half a million dollars for a program aimed at helping some of the city’s most vulnerable.

For almost two decades, the Anchorage Safety Patrol (ASP) received about $200,000 in funding from the Southcentral Foundation. Like many entities and programs receiving federal funds, however, ongoing sequestration cuts in Congress mean that funding simply won’t be there in the future.

That’s why the Anchorage Assembly gave $515,000 to the ASP program, giving it enough money to buy two new fans and fill six new shifts, ensuring at least one van is on the streets 24 hours a day year-round.

On Wednesday, ASP medic Krystie Stevenson and driver Pam Garner worked the morning shift — 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. — a shift that, until a month ago, was unstaffed.

“About a month and a half ago, our first van came on the road about two o’clock [in the afternoon],” Stevenson said. “By that time our vans came on we’d have about 15 calls to respond to.”

Anticipating the new funding, the safety patrol was able to staff the shift for the past month, marking the first time the program has been able to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. “Now that we’re 24 hours, it’s a lot easier to manage our calls,” Stevenson said.

The women answered three calls on Wednesday — “a slow morning,” Garner said, who usually sees about ten calls — and had to break up a fight between two clients before bringing them back to the city’s Safety Center.

”It all that kind of rolls into one big necessity, what we’re doing,” Stevenson said. “It’s really a borderline job we’re doing. We’re medics, we’re partially security, and then partially a really low subdivide of [police] and [firefighters].”

Dropping their patients at the Safety Center means police, ambulance EMTs, and firefighters can focus on more important calls. With Anchorage police handling about 30 percent of admissions to the Safety Center, funding for new vans and more staff means those numbers should drop, freeing up other responders and resources.

”It doesn’t take up the jail, and it doesn’t take up the hospital, but there’s somewhere where medical people can watch over them until they’re OK to go on their own,” Stevenson said.

The funding will keep the Anchorage Safety Patrol on patrol — all day, every day — taking care of the people who can’t take care of themselves.

Latest Stories

  • Weather

    Nightcast Weather, March 27

    by KTVA Weather on Mar 27, 23:03

    Kenai Peninsula/Prince William Sound Expecting decreasing clouds with showers along the eastern coasts and Prince William Sound.   Southeast Rain showers will continue with heaviest showers in the south.   Interior/North Slope It will be mostly cloudy by the afternoon in interior areas. Along the North Slope it will be mostly cloudy with some light […]

  • Politics

    ASD, state lawmakers spar over budget concerns.

    by Joe Vigil on Mar 27, 22:51

    First state lawmakers fired off a letter criticizing Anchorage School Board members for passing a budget that included nearly $12 million cut by Gov. Bill Walker in January. Now the Anchorage School Board president is firing back with a letter of his own to state lawmakers. In that letter, Eric Croft says that while the district […]

  • News

    Amanda Knox grateful to ‘have my life back’ after court saga

    by Associated Press on Mar 27, 21:25

        SEATTLE- Amanda Knox says she’s grateful “for the life that’s been given to me” after Italy’s highest court overturned her murder conviction in the slaying of her roommate. Speaking briefly Friday evening to reporters outside her mother’s Seattle home, Knox expressed her thanks “for the justice I’ve received and for the support I’ve […]

  • News

    House panel moves bill addressing municipal marijuana regs

    by Associated Press on Mar 27, 21:19

    A bill addressing how municipalities regulate marijuana businesses has moved out of a House committee. The House Judiciary Committee moved a new version of Rep. Cathy Tilton’s bill, which would help define a municipality’s role in regulating marijuana businesses, set a maximum household limit of 24 marijuana plants and add marijuana clubs to the list […]

  • News

    Young geography whizzes compete for state title

    by Shannon Ballard on Mar 27, 21:11

    Young geography whizzes in Alaska and across the county competed on Friday for a spot in the 27th annual National Geographic Bee. Fourth through eighth graders spent months studying, preparing to get the questions right and proved themselves as the top student in their school. The winner, seventh grader Ben Ng from Juneau’s Floyd Dryden […]

  • News

    House passes bill designating day to honor Alaska elders

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Mar 27, 20:41

    The Alaska House of Representatives has passed a bill designating the winter solstice as a day of honor for elders all across the state. Representatives across the board voted to pass House Bill 142 Friday, with only three excluded votes. The bill’s aim is to “honor the positive effect of Alaska elders on the generations […]

  • Crime

    Pastor sentenced to 10 years in prison for child pornography

    by Dave Leval on Mar 27, 20:24

    Ronald Rathbun Sr has helped counsel inmates. The pastor will continue to do that, but as one of them. Rathbun will spend 10 years in prison, a sentence handed down to the 58-year-old Friday. He pleaded guilty to child pornography charges in December. Alaska State Troopers arrested Rathbun at his home in November 2013. They […]

  • News

    Bean’s Cafe clients pitch in for cleanup

    by Lauren Maxwell on Mar 27, 17:43

    The area around Bean’s Café and the Brother Francis Shelter is looking a lot brighter after clients picked up 420 pounds of garbage Friday morning. The clean-up included removing a few items left on Karluk Street where people have been camping on the sidewalk for months. Police said most of the campers had moved on […]