Eight months into the COVID-19 pandemic and secure, remote governing continues to be a top priority. Governments around the world are working tirelessly to scale their public services – and that means continuity of operations like voting procedures for legislative bodies and hearings in courtrooms, even while those venues remain closed.
This pandemic and its evolving consequences have shown that technology is an increasingly important component that enables governments to stay securely connected and productive.
In order to better support governmental organizations with these resiliency efforts, Cisco is thrilled to announce global government solutions that support resiliency for remote and hybrid governing. In particular, these solutions will help judicial systems as well as legislative and parliamentary bodies pivot to redefine the business of governing.
Giving Legislative Bodies the Tools They Need for What’s Now and What’s Next
A key component to this announcement is Legislate for Cisco Webex, a new cloud-based solution that enables legislative and parliamentary bodies to convene securely and safety while meeting specialized requirements such as voting, simultaneous translation, and more. Even amid the seemingly daily crises associated with the current pandemic environment, governments must continue their important work. But, running the deliberative assembly or considering a meaningful vote isn’t like a regular meeting from your home office. Legislate for Webex allows policymakers and legislators from city councils to state assemblies to multi-national parliaments to keep democracy functioning through a trusted collaboration experience, while seamlessly accommodating for the unique rules, procedures, and roles of each legislative body.
This solution, developed with the help of Cisco’s Country Digital Acceleration program and Irish systems integrator and Cisco partner, Davra, includes a host of stand-out features. Capabilities such as secure remote voting, simultaneous interpretation in more than a dozen languages, and private sidebar rooms to enable parliamentarians and legislators to have those “hallway” and caucus conversations will all help facilitate a better than being there collaboration experience. The work our government customers do matters – regardless of where they do it.
Connecting our courtrooms, corrections facilities, and communities
Today, we are also excited to announce Cisco’s Connected Justice solution that will span across the judicial system – from the courtroom, to correctional facilities, and to rehabilitative support in the community. This solution enables real-time, on-demand, and secure interactions.
Most importantly, Cisco continues its industry leadership and provides the only standards-based video solution that delivers a secure, seamless integration across multiple platforms.
A great example of meeting the challenge to maintain continuity of justice is when Brazil’s National Council of Justice (CNJ) struggled to maintain operations as COVID-19 disrupted the country. Cisco provided a collaboration platform that was highly secure and flexible enough to share documents, photos, and other content seamlessly and dynamically. Since then, tens of thousands of events have taken place virtually, including witness interviews, evidence sharing, hearings, and judgment sessions.
In Indiana, the Elkhart County government was forced to adapt when hundreds of people could no longer enter the courthouse daily during the pandemic. Community health and safety was a priority yet stopping all activity in nine county courtrooms would create an unacceptable backlog. The secure Cisco network infrastructure allowed the county to adjust quickly. All court hearings are now conducted in a remote or hybrid fashion, allowing the county to recognize an almost immediate return on their investment. Featured at the heart of these remote operations was Cisco Webex, giving staff the flexibility to work securely from any location.
Powering an inclusive future for all
Another imperative component of maintaining critical operations during COVID-19 is access to funding. To help, Cisco is now offering global support to our partners and customers who are looking for options to secure funding through stimulus or grant activities.
Every day, Cisco is honored to support frontline employees in and out of government. We will continue to innovate alongside our government leaders to remain agile and responsive as we navigate the future together.
How are you building resiliency and continuity for your government organization? Comment below. Share your thoughts. Join the conversation. And keep an eye out for the next #GovernmentNow post.