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Author: Eilis Maynard
Wondering how colleges and universities tackle emergency preparedness? It’s a job for the experts, many of whom joined with FEMA last week to discuss the topic.  But it wasn't an in-person meeting - we used Twitter to host a virtual "panel" of universities while taking questions from others.Emergency management professionals from Boston College, DePaul University in Chicago, Florida State University, and Virginia Tech took to Twitter for an hour on September 18 to answer questions about their preparedness methods and the unique threats their schools face.The most exciting portions of the...
Posted On: September 23, 2013
Author: Darryl Madden
Last week marked the start of National Preparedness Month.  All across the country, communities are hosting preparedness events encouraging everyone that “You can be the hero” when it comes to emergency preparedness.Earlier this week, I had the pleasure of kicking off the month with partners in the New York City area. One thing we stressed at different events is how easy getting prepared can be.  For some things – like talking through a family communication plan – just takes time.  It’s not expensive at all, and the return on your investment of time will return great dividends...
Posted On: September 10, 2013
Author: Ashley Wargo, Dave Bujak
Tweeting, tagging, poking, and pinning.  This may sound like a foreign language to some, but to the FSU Alert team at Florida State University, this is everyday language.  The presence, purpose, and promise of social media can no longer be ignored, and our team has been working hard to combine the worlds of social media and emergency preparedness to help keep our campus community updated and informed.For the tenth annual National Preparedness Month this September, Florida State University has created FSU Emergency Preparedness Week (#FSUPrep) during the week of Sept. 9 to highlight...
Posted On: September 9, 2013
Author: Steve Edwards
After I left the office on August 6, 2013, I went to the annual “Crime Prevention and National Night Out” celebration sponsored by the Springfield Police Department, Delaware County, PA, the Target Corporation, along with local businesses. National Night Out's goal is to “heighten crime and drug prevention, gain support for local anti-crime efforts, strengthen neighborhood spirit, and let criminals know that Springfield residents are committed to keeps Springfield Township safe.”National Night Out was successful in Delaware County because it represented the diversity of the community. ...
Posted On: August 27, 2013
Author: Michael Sharon
Great weather has a way of getting people outside – and in this case, it helped share the message of being prepared for emergencies.  On Saturday, July 27, the warm temperatures brought out hundreds of residents to their local Home Depot store for new tools and supplies so they could work on home improvement projects. In Downingtown, PA, people that arrived at their local Home Depot, saw various private sector, local, and state representatives who came together to encourage preparedness in the community.We were there from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., talking to customers and answering...
Posted On: August 16, 2013
Author: Randy Wagoner
As we celebrate the 23rd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) on July 26, 2013, I recall a quote by Justin Dart Jr., the man described as the Father of the ADA.  Dart said, “The vision of justice is an eternal long march to the promised land of the good life for all." Now for those that may not know, the ADA is a landmark civil rights law passed in 1990 with bipartisan congressional support and signed by President George H.W. Bush.  The ADA prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in areas like employment, participation in State and local...
Posted On: July 26, 2013
Author: Art Faulkner
There is no question that April 27, 2011 changed the lives of Alabamians. On that one day, our state experienced more than 60 confirmed tornadoes causing widespread devastation. Soon after, we decided to do all we could to make our state safer in the future.In the days, weeks and months following the tornadoes, Governor Bentley and I toured the state and heard the personal stories of disaster survivors.  Many of them told us how they only had moments to find safety while praying for their lives and the lives of their loved ones.They were the lucky ones that day.  No matter how...
Posted On: July 18, 2013
Author: LesleyAnne Ezelle
Here at FEMA we’re committed to the “Whole Community” approach to emergency management which Administrator Fugate initiated when he arrived. For those of you that haven’t heard of the Whole Community concept, it basically says that FEMA can’t manage emergencies by ourselves; we need to make sure that we’re including the private sector, community organizations, faith-based organizations, state local, and tribal government, the general public, non-profits, schools, our partners in other federal agencies, and almost any other group you can think of. One specific part of the Whole Community idea...
Posted On: July 15, 2013
Author: Rebecca Jennings
What would you do if you found out there was a tornado headed right toward you, right now? On average, you get at least 13 minutes to respond.The clock starts now:Ask yourself, would you know it was coming?How would you hear about the warning?Where would you go to safely seek shelter?What if you were asleep?Are you ready?That’s just minutes to hear about the tornado warning, figure out what is going on, make a decision about what you will do, and take action that could save your life.Now consider this:What if you were at work?School?A busy mall or dark movie theater?What would you do? Where...
Posted On: June 26, 2013
Author: Gene Gruber
While I couldn’t be there in person to present the Community Rating System plaque to the City of Altoona Commissioners during their recent meeting, I did want to recognize that as of October 1, 2012 the City of Altoona joined an elite group of communities across the country who are going above and beyond the minimum requirements to make their communities safer from flood risk.For a bit of background, the National Flood Insurance Program's (NFIP) Community Rating System is a voluntary incentive program that recognizes and encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the...
Posted On: June 24, 2013

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