By Anna Duckworth

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – San Francisco city staff members, patrolling high crime areas as community ambassadors, are now being equipped with high tech tools.

Until now, the only tool the ambassadors in bright yellow jackets had as they patrol the 3rd street and mid-Market corridors were the cell phones donated by AT&T when the program launched a year and a half ago. Now the hi-tech giant has donated again, this time 20 tablet computers. Adrian Pon with the Office of Civic Engagement and Immigration Affairs, said that they’ll be valuable in helping residents and tourists get directions and much more.

KCBS’ Anna Duckworth Reports:

“These tablets will allow our ambassadors to conduct surveys and collect data, and using cloud technology, instantly be able to send it to the office so that we can analyze it much more quickly,” said Pon.

Ambassadors can report crimes and other incidents faster with the tablets too. Bayview District supervisor Malia Cohen said that they’ll provide another layer of security.

“Here we are in the 21st Century, and now we’re beginning to act like citizens of the 21st Century,” said Cohen. “We’re beginning to couple the boots that are on the ground with technology.”

Other proposed uses for the tablets include language translation, reporting maintenance issues and showing people how to make their own reports to the city.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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