Friday, November 21, 2008


How often have you found yourself walking home alone, susceptible to danger? Be it in the suburbs or the city, during the night or the afternoon, it is never wise to travel solo, especially if you are a young woman. These days, most people call a friend or significant other, imploring them to "just stay on the phone with me? I am only a couple of blocks away." But what about those times that nobody answers, and your only sense of protection comes from the street lights scattered on every pitch-black corner?

The Idea: a Cellular Safety Service.

The service would require the caller to dial an easy-to-remember number which would connect them with a representative, who would immediately pinpoint their location, as well as have access to dialing 911 in the event of an emergency. The caller would not be put on hold with an automated machine; rather, the caller would be one-on-one with the rep the entire time, feeling just as secure as they would if the person on the other end was their close friend. A Cellular Safety Service would be useful for everyone, from a mall employee who has to walk across a deserted parking lot after closing, to someone making their way home from a friend's house in the middle of the night.

The service could be funded by public funds (as part of a public safety initiative), by advertising revenues (the Cellular Safety Service representative would perform live-reads – similar to radio disc jockeys - for various products and services while on the phone), or ideally, a combination of both.

Some might argue there is no need for this service - that people in trouble could just call 911 themselves. Unfortunately, when an incident occurs, it is sudden and forceful, making it very unlikely that the victim would have the time or capacity to dial anything at all. A Cellular Safety Service would be about a proactive, rather than reactive, approach.

To learn more about government grants which could potentially be used to fund such a program, check out

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