Provide More Assistance to Families
ISSUE: As with most deaths the Coroner's Office investigates, it leaves the family with so many unanswered questions. On top of that the family is left little to no guidance or information on the Coroner's Office. Families often meet the investigating Coroner or Deputy Coroner at the time of investigation and are not provided any additional information.
SOLUTION: Provide the family with grief or support material at the time of the death. Provide information upon request to the family and ensure all of their questions are answered and they understand the additional steps that will be taken in the investigation.
Deputy Coroner Compensation and Benefits
ISSUE: Deputy Coroner’s currently work with no compensation or reimbursement of expenses incurred while serving the citizens of Marshall County. They also perform their duties without the coverage of worker’s compensation insurance, disability insurance, or liability insurance that would otherwise protect them from injury or other incidents.
SOLUTION: My goal is to work with the Marshall County Commission to develop a compensation or re-imbursement plan for all Deputy Coroner’s. I will also work with the commission to establish coverage for all Deputy Coroner’s in worker’s compensation insurance, disability insurance, or liability insurance. Individuals serving in the Coroner’s Office should not have to do so at their own risk or expense. These individuals work holidays, nights, weekends, and any other time of the year and deserve to be taken care of by the citizens of Marshall County.
Coroner and Deputy Coroner Training
ISSUE: Currently there are no county standard of training for those investigating deaths in the county, other than the 12 hours annual required by the State of Alabama. Training is crucial to ensure every death is thoroughly investigated and evidence is processed and transported in a secure manner
SOLUTION: I will work to establish a standard training requirements that exceed those required by state law. Every member of the Coroner's office will work towards certification from the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigation. This will ensure those serving in the Coroner's office have the training and competency to carry out an investigation into a suspicious and unattended death.
ISSUE: The Marshall County Coroner currently owns and operates his/her own vehicle for fulfilling the duties of the office. No other county official must use his/her own vehicle to perform the duties of their office. Many of the calls the Coroner responses to requires parking on the side of roadways, fields, driveways, and other publicly traveled areas. The vehicle is covered by his/her own private automobile insurance and any accidents or damage is covered by the personal funds of the Coroner. The Coroner also travels throughout the county and may crisscross the county multiple times during a single week.
SOLUTION: Work with the County Commission to purchase and equip a SUV for use of the Coroner’s Office. Seek additional funding to help maintain and operate the vehicle and equipment.
Electronic Cremation Permits
ISSUE: Currently any individual who dies within Marshall County, regardless of location within the county, must have a written permit to be cremated. This process can sometimes take 24 hours or longer to receive a cremation permit from the Coroner
SOLUTION: An online system that will allow funeral homes to complete the permit online and receive a confirmation within a few minutes after completing the request. This will speed up the process of the receiving permits from the coroner.
Work on Public Relations
ISSUE: The Coroner’s Office is the least known office in the county. It is not publicly visible in anyway to the citizens of Marshall County. The citizens often do not know who serves them in the Coroner’s Office.
SOLUTION: The Coroner and Deputy Coroner’s will become more visible to the public with insignia and uniforms shirts and jackets that will allow them to stand out. The Coroner’s office will also be more visible by helping at public events and activities.