Washington, DC Not Guaranteeing Public Safety...

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Folks, Paul Milne touched on this several days ago, but it didn't get much traffic.

Now, I'd be the first to admit that Washington, DC really doesn't "guarantee" public safety now , but this story, if it gets a lot of attention, could certainly ratchet public awareness up a notch or two. Maybe even to near that being paid to the short NBA season..... Anyway, this came off of Y2K Newswire (http://www.y2knewswire.com/) Their quotes are accurate and not taken out of context.

The Washington Post published an eye-popping story on Friday that warns D.C. citizens may be in physical danger thanks to Y2K-induced failures in police departments and emergency services. The report says many city services may simply not work after 1/1/2000. The story leads off with, "District residents face a "significant risk" that the city's computer problems associated with the year 2000 will disrupt schools, the police department, the delivery of health care services and a range of other programs, according to a federal report slated for release today on Capitol Hill."

The study was done by the General Accounting Office, and its conclusions send a strong, clear message: residents of Washington D.C. are potentially threatened by Y2K, and public safety can no longer be guaranteed, even by the most well-meaning police officers and city officials. It isn't the people's desire to protect the public that's lacking: it's the infrastructure!

(It also raises the all-important question: if the city that houses government fails, how will government get anything done?)

Rep. Thomas M. Davis, chairman of the House Government Oversight subcommittee on the District, says about D.C. "It is hard to find a city that is this far behind at this stage... stuff will be all screwed up."

"Mary Ellen Hanley, the District's Y2K program manager, said yesterday that the federal assessment of the city's potential computer problems is accurate. She said the city's primary emphasis is on developing plans to prevent a breakdown in the delivery of services to residents."

The report goes on to say, "The District may be unable to effectively ensure public safety, collect revenue, educate students and provide health care services..."


-- Jon Williamson (jwilliamson003@sprintmail.com), February 22, 1999


Thanks for the heads-up again. Interesting the difference between the GAO report, and what is being reported on tv on the DC local news stations. Repeat the mantra "We're ok, everything is fine, don't worry, go back to sleep..."

In fact, some have reported that DC is better off than many other areas because their systems are so antiquated that they're just scrapping them and buying all new stuff.

-- Melinda Gierisch (gieriscm@hotmail.com), February 22, 1999.

We have another thread on this started early this A.M. ... Washington, D.C.


-- Sysman (y2kboard@yahoo.com), February 22, 1999.

Thanks, Sysman. Let's keep the observations and comments in one place. I appreciate you inserting the live link.

-- Jon Williamson (pssomerville@sprintmail.com), February 22, 1999.

This is nothing new.

It has been held over and over by our sterling court system that the government (at any level) has NO duty to protect any individual citizen. It may protect the "public", and if you happen to be in the "public" that is protected, fine. If not, you're toast.

Now, if you decide to protect yourself (with maybe, horrors, a gun) then you are a "threat to public safety".

Kind of puts you on the horns of a dilemna, doesn't it?

-- a (A@AisA.com), February 22, 1999.

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