The Laurens County Sheriff’s Office wants to make sure that everyone who needs to contact 911 has the means to do so. As a result, LCSO is now a proud community partner of Secure the Call, a nationwide organization that provides free 911 emergency-only phones to those in need. Hundreds of thousands of people in this country are electronically isolated from readily available emergency services with no convenient way to dial 911. Even in 2023, many in rural areas do not have cell phones.
Secure the Call collects unwanted but functioning cell phones, processes them so they can immediately be used to acquire 911 services, and ships them out to agencies across the United States. Agencies like LCSO then redistribute the phones to individuals who are in need and at a high risk for needing emergency services. This includes domestic abuse victims, senior citizens, those who are homeless, and other vulnerable individuals. Our office will partner with local agencies (the Safe Home, SC Empowerment Center, and Family Promise…etc.) who provide resources to these community members to properly disperse the phones through a referral process when possible.
Safe Home Executive Director Dawn Ardelt said, “This opportunity will allow us to provide a safe and secure lifeline to our clients. We are grateful to the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office partnership, the residents of Laurens County who donate their phones to this program and Secure The Call for this life saving assistance. Together we can make a difference to those living in an abusive relationship.”
LCSO will accept unwanted phones to send back to Secure the Call for processing, where they are refurbished with all data removed. Phones (and chargers if you have them) can be dropped off at the Sheriff’s Office (216 West Main Street) during normal business hours.
“Not everyone has the luxury of a cell phone, so programs like this are so vital. We want people to be able to call us when they need us. I’m proud of this partnership and I thank Secure the Call for giving us the opportunity. I hope that citizens of Laurens County will donate their used phones to the program and that the agencies we are partnering with will utilize this great service for their clients who truly need it.” -Sheriff Don Reynolds