The following is a NY Daily News article:
Elected officials reacted with outrage Monday to a Daily News probe that found it nearly impossible to get through to many police stationhouses by telephone.
City Councilman Simcha Felder (D-Brooklyn) – whose district includes the worst-rated 66th Precinct – blamed ancient phone systems and bad police behavior.
Phone systems need to be modernized, but “even with brand-new phone equipment, someone at the precinct still needs to pick up the phone,” he said.
As part of a month-long probe, The News phoned all 76 city stationhouses and found 40% of the precincts did an “unacceptable” job answering the phone.
To earn an acceptable rating, cops had to pick up in fewer than 10 rings on at least five of the seven calls.
At the 66th Precinct, the phone rang 52 times on one call before going to a busy signal, and a cop answered another call after 16 rings – and promptly hung up.
City Council Public Safety Committee Chairman Peter Vallone (D-Queens) said cuts to the Police Department have left cops stretched too thin, noting the size of the force has fallen by 6,000 since 2001.
“The more you cut cops, the more the phones will ring,” Vallone said. The mayor’s office declined to comment on The News’ findings. NYPD spokesman Paul Browne said department reviews found much different results.
In the past six months, only 30 of 3,535 test calls placed to precincts weren’t answered promptly, less than 1%, he said.
“In these instances, commanders were directed to address delays,” Browne said.
(LINK to NY Daily News)
So who do you believe? An independent study or the Mayor’s lackeys?
This is a real problem, because people often call the precinct numbers directlyof for various issues.
The best idea, if it’s not an emergency of course, is call 311 and have them transfer you. If you do that, a record is kept. If you call direct and they choose not to pick up, you have no proof of it.
why don’t they hire non-cops just to pick up the phones?
This is alot to do about nothing.
1) One should only call the precinct for non-emergency business. Should you call the precinct for an emergency, they will tell you to hang up and call 911.
2) Therefore, if the desk cop is busy booking a prisoner or filling out a stolen vehicle report, he would not answer the phone immediatley knowing in advance that chances are that the call is not urgent.
I know the above as I live a few doors down from the 66 PCT and have personally been witness to what I’ve written.