RF Technologies (RFT) HELP ALERT Featured in News Coverage Highlighting City of Chicago Ordinance Requiring Chicago Hotels to Equip Workers with Mobile Panic Alarms

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July 1 deadline for compliance is approaching.

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“There’s growing recognition in the industry that employees working in isolation are at particular risk for harassment and/or assault." Brian Kinne, Vice President, RFT Help Alert

RF Technologies (RFT) HELP ALERT® Mobile Panic Alarm for Hospitality was featured this week in a news story (WTTW-TV, Chicago) highlighting the recently-enacted City of Chicago ordinance intended to protect hospitality workers from sexual assault and other forms of intimidation and violence in the workplace—and an upcoming July 1 deadline for industry compliance.

Originally sponsored by Alderman Michele Harris, 8th Ward, and backed by labor unions including Unite Here Local 1, the anti-harassment ordinance stipulates that employees working alone in Chicago hotels must be issued mobile panic alarms (such as RFT’s HELP ALERT) that would enable them to immediately alert security if they encounter uncomfortable or potentially dangerous situations during the course of their work.

According to Jorge Ramirez of the Chicago Federation of Labor, initial implementation of the ordinance began in January 2018, with a requirement for workers to be equipped with personal panic alarms no later than July 1. Ramirez adds, “I’m very proud of our city for being the first to pass such an ordinance. We know this is an industry where workers are particularly susceptible to this kind of treatment.”

Brian Kinne, vice president of RFT’s PinPoint division (which heads up the company’s HELP ALERT product line) says, “We recognize the needs of the many dedicated workers in the hospitality industry, and remain fully committed to providing the best tools possible to help mitigate potential threats. We know HELP ALERT notifications are effective… about that, there is no doubt.” Kinne adds, “There’s growing recognition in the industry that employees working in isolation are at particular risk for harassment and/or assault. If the individual has the ability to promptly and discreetly alert security to a situation while remaining calm, knowing that help is on the way, escalation can almost always be avoided.”

Hotel workers are already wearing such devices, including RFT’s HELP ALERT, in cities including New York and Washington, D.C. In Seattle, similar protection is included as part of Initiative 124 (also referred to as I-124) under which hotels are required to provide hotel workers with panic buttons. Similar mandates and/or ordinances are in-process and are likely soon to be adopted in areas in California (Sacramento and Orange County), Nevada (Las Vegas), and elsewhere. Such protection is being requested with increased frequency by staff members and local unions representing hospitality workers.

RFT is pleased to be a part of such an important initiative focused on keeping hospitality workers safe. We are ready to put to work our 30+ years of experience keeping people safe in hospitals, senior living facilities, schools, higher education, and hotels, with our HELP ALERT Mobile Panic Alarm System.

WTTW-TV feature, click here: https://chicagotonight.wttw.com/2018/06/25/starting-july-1-chicago-hotels-will-need-have-panic-buttons.

FOX32-Chicago feature on HELP ALERT: http://www.fox32chicago.com/news/293929523-video

For background information on this important issue, follow these news links:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-hotel-housekeepers-panic-buttons-xxxx-20180605-story.html
http://www.mychinews.com/news/chicago-hotel-workers-may-soon-have-a-panic-button
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/politics/ct-rahm-emanuel-chicago-city-council-0418-story.html
http://chicago.suntimes.com/news/hotels-urged-to-combat-sexual-harassment-against-female-employees/
http://abc7chicago.com/news/panic-button-ordinance-proposed-to-protect-hotel-workers/1885056/

Also, a July 2016 report issued by Unite Here Local 1:
https://www.handsoffpantson.org/wp-content/uploads/HandsOffReportWeb.pdf

About RF Technologies
RF Technologies provides safety solutions at over 10,000 senior living, healthcare, education and hospitality facilities nationwide. Life safety solutions such as CODE ALERT® Wander Management, QUICK RESPONSE® Wireless Nurse Call, SAFE PLACE® Infant Security, and HELP ALERT® reduce risk for residents, staff, and the facility; innovations such as RFT CARES® smartphone application improve caregiver coordination and efficiency. Backed by 30 years of experience in senior living, RF Technologies’ solutions are UL-certified to meet today’s life safety standards. For information visit: http://www.rft.com.

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Brenda Gallenberger
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