Metropolitan News-Enterprise


Friday, March 29, 2002


Page 4


Long Beach Courthouse Rolls Out Pocket Directories to Aid Court Users


By a MetNews Staff Writer


The Los Angeles Superior Court’s Long Beach Courthouse has recently introduced pocket directories to help visitors find their way around the court building.

The business card-sized directories give visitors the courtroom number, the floor where it is located and the room number as well as the locations of other major offices within the courthouse.

The idea for the directories came from Leticia Alcala, of the Long Beach courthouse’s community relations office, as a way of improving customer service at the court and the information cards were rolled out two months ago, a court official said.

Alcala said she was creating easy to follow directions for the courthouse information desk clerk to give to the public when she came up with the idea for the pocket directories.

“I guess since I was thinking in miniature, the pocket directories just came to me,” she said.

“As simple as it, is it escaped everyone,” Jim Manczarek, the courthouse’s trial court administrator, said.

The court’s nearly 200 employees also keep laminated versions of the directories next to their employee badges to help them direct lost visitors around the courthouse’s six floors and 27 courtrooms.

Manczarek said putting the directories in the hands of the employees not only helps court visitors get to where they need to go, but it also allows employees to confidently give visitors directions instead of feeling at a loss if they don’t know the exact location of an office.

“It’s always right there handy,” Manczarek said.

The directories are available to court visitors at the courthouse’s public information counter.

Producing the directories costs about $400 a year, Manczarek said, an expense which is paid for through the courthouse’s local budget.

Other courthouses are currently looking into the possibility of creating their own directories, Alcala said. The San Fernando courthouse has already created their own directory as has the not-yet-opened Chatsworth courthouse, which includes a telephone extension for each courtroom, she said.


Copyright 2002, Metropolitan News Company