San Francisco Shelter Protects At-Risk Families with IP Video and Access Control
Milestone Husky NVR, Axis Door Station and Network Cameras help Hamilton Family Center secure residents in fragile transition
Milestone Systems has partnered with Axis Communications and The Consulting Group (TCG) to create a unique security solution for Hamilton Family Center in San Francisco, California. The solution uses a combination of the Milestone Husky M30 NVR with XProtect Smart Client and Milestone Mobile clients, Axis network cameras and Axis A-8004-VE Network Video Door station.
The Hamilton Family Center (HFC), a shelter for victims of domestic violence and homelessness, needed an updated security system to protect its residents. The center’s previous system included analog DVR recorders that had poor image quality and made it difficult for HFC to efficiently monitor hallways and common areas. HFC wanted high quality cameras with superior coverage and a network video recorder (NVR) that could help security staff quickly and efficiently handle incidents.
The Milestone Husky M30 NVR gives HFC a recording solution that has Milestone XProtect video management software preloaded and configured for fast installation, optimal performance and reliability. The system’s ease of use allows security staff to set up and manage views with minimal training.
“We don't have users at this location who are very familiar with computer software,” said principal and owner of TCG, Jeanine Lovejoy. “That’s what makes Milestone video management products so great. Training sessions are so easy, and the intuitive interface and simplicity of creating and managing views means we never have to teach someone twice.”
Dave Curto is Director of Operations for the Human Services Agency, which is responsible for all self-sufficiency programs in San Francisco, including the Hamilton Family Center. He says that he and his staff were able to learn how to use the Milestone Husky on the first demonstration. He also appreciates the ability to view incidents in real time and the ease of video export. Axis cameras provide comprehensive coverage throughout the facility while the access control system is tightly managed.
“We work closely with the San Francisco police,” Curto said. “They have access to view our security video, and with the new system it’s so easy for them to grab the data they need and export it onto a drive. In addition, the image quality is such that video evidence from Axis and Milestone is consistently admissible in court.”
HFC exclusively uses Axis network cameras at the facility, as well as the Axis Door Station. Instead of using pan tilt zoom (PTZ) cameras, TCG was able to use fixed panoramic cameras and flatten the 360-degree camera images in the Milestone XProtect Smart Client display, which provides optimal overview without intruding on the privacy of HFC residents with unnecessary cameras.
The Axis Door Station comes with a high-performing intercom function that provides clear and echo-free, two-way speech with visitors. Combined with an integrated high-definition camera and excellent low-light and wide dynamic range (WDR) performance, the unit offers reliable 24/7 identification of persons at the HFC entrance.
“It’s imperative to know exactly who is coming and going at all times,” Lovejoy said. “With the Axis Door Station, we can be sure that every person who approaches, enters or leaves the facility is properly identified.”
The Milestone Mobile client is Lovejoy’s favorite component of the system. It allows TCG to remotely lend a hand with security monitoring when there’s lag time between security guard shift changes. With only one full-time security guard, and a lot of activity through the doors, this feature is a big help in knowing from a phone or tablet miles away what is going on at the center.
“Above all, HFC has to be a safe place,” Lovejoy said. “The residents need to feel protected. Milestone and Axis technology assists in a big way. In addition, the technical support teams have been extremely helpful with the installation and making themselves available to help with any matters that have arisen.”