home logo

Justice Solutions

A Web Site By Crime Victim Professionals for Crime Victim Professionals

Put It On "ICE"

National Crime Victim Advocates Promote Cell Phones as a Safety Tool
“Put It On ICE”

September 1, 2005, Washington, D.C.

Cellular phones can be a powerful tool to promote individual and community safety, particularly in times of personal emergency or national disasters. Advocates for victims of crime, led by the Washington, D.C.-based non-profit organization Justice Solutions, urge all cellular phone users in America to “put it on ICE” – “in case of emergency” – and include pertinent contact information for family members and other emergency contacts in their cell phone’s address book or directory.

The “ICE Campaign” was first initiated by Bob Brotchie of Great Britain’s East Anglian Ambulance Service in April of 2005. The simple concept was in response to the need for first responders to a crisis or disaster to be able to save valuable time in contacting family members and friends of someone who is in crisis, injured or deceased.

There are over 150 million people in America who own cell phones. In cases of emergency, first responders – including police, fire officials, paramedics, or concerned citizens – seek critical, timely and sometimes life-saving contact information by scrolling through cell phone directories for the telephone numbers of family or friends.


According to David Beatty, Executive Director of Justice Solutions, cell phones can be a powerful tool to aid those who respond first to a critical incident by providing them with crucial contact information for a victim’s family members or friends.

“Whether someone is a victim of a personal crime, mass crime, or natural disaster, the ‘ICE’ contact information on his or her cell phone can expedite critical contacts with family and friends,” Beatty explained. “It’s a simple, cost-free solution that can immediately inform family and friends of the situation at hand, and obtain critical medical information that may be needed by emergency and medical responders.”

“We need look no further than the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina to understand the importance of this simple and vital safety tool,” Beatty concluded.

Even if cellular services are rendered useless by power outages in emergency situations, or if the cell phone is in a region that lacks service, a charged cell phone will still have the capacity to locate its “telephone directory” or “address book” from the phone’s menu.

How To "Put It On ICE"

ICE Parents

To “put it on ICE,” there are four easy steps:

1. Determine your most relevant contact(s) in case of an emergency, such as:

  • Parents.
  • Siblings.
  • Roommates.
  • Neighbors.
  • Co-workers.

2. Inform your ICE contacts that you are including them in your cellular phone directory as your “ICE contact.”

3. Provide your ICE contacts – in writing – of any information relevant to your health and well being, such as allergies, medical conditions, prescriptions you are currently using, or personal wishes in case of situations involving life support.

4. When they agree to be your ICE contact:

  • Simply enter their telephone number and relationship in your cellular phone.
  • For example:
    • ICE Parents (area code/telephone number).
    • ICE Neighbor (area code/telephone number).

Additional Advice for ICE

  • If your ICE contact is deaf or hearing impaired, simply indicate your ICE contact with the prefix "ICETEXT"
  • If you are under age 18, make sure that your ICE contact is a parent or other adult who is authorized to make decisions on your behalf (such as medical treatment or "do not resuscitate" instructions).
  • Keep your ICE contacts current.
  • For example:

    If you get divorced, change jobs or move your residence, you should update your ICE information.

    For Victims of Crime

    ICE can be a critical component to:

    • Offer some "peace of mind" that those closest to you will be informed of any critical incident.
    • Notify your loved ones if you are in crisis.
    • Provide your family and friends with the opportunity to provide critical support to you in immediate response to any crime committed against you.
    • Help to ensure that you receive the best and most effective treatment by emergency responders and medical professionals.

    About Justice Solutions

    Justice Solutions is a national non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing rights, resources and respect for victims and communities hurt by crime; enhancing governmental and societal responses to crime and its consequences on individuals and communities; and strengthening crime prevention initiatives in America. Justice Solutions accomplishes its mission through the provision of:

    • Education, training and technical assistance to victims, service providers, criminal justice and juvenile justice professionals, allied professionals and members of the community.
    • Promoting research-to-practice as the foundation for public and justice-related policy development, and community safety and victim assistance programs.
    • Promoting sound public policy that enhances victims' rights and services, offender accountability, and community protection.
    • Collaborating with individuals, organizations and government agencies that share its vision and goals.

    Justice Solutions
    720 Seventh Street, NW
    Third Floor
    Washington, D.C. 20003


    Click Here to become a PSA Partner


    Voca Letter



    To Search The Justice Solutions Web Site:

    Click Here


    divider 2

    E-mail JS

    divide 3

    For comments or concerns regarding this website, please contact:



    Copyright © 2004 Justice Solutions Last Modified:
    January 27, 2011 11:43 AM

    divide 4