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Author: Secretary Hilda Solis
Editor's note: This was originally posted on the U.S. Dept. of Labor Blog.No television image or news report can prepare you for this.Families without power—unable to shower or wash their clothes for days—huddled together in churches serving as “warming centers” to provide refuge from the stinging cold outside…Secretary Solis toured a hard hit area of Queens where flood waters and sand took their toll on the neighborhood.Mounds of displaced sand plowed two stories high in residential neighborhoods, so homeowners could finally get through their front door to survey the damage inside…Mothers...
Posted On: November 6, 2012
Author: Flat Stanley and Flat Stella
A lot of activity has been happening around FEMA lately as we get ready for Hurricane Sandy to come into land.  Today, we visited a very busy place called the National Response Coordination Center, or NRCC, where lots of people come together to work on helping those who may get rain, wind, or lose power from Hurricane Sandy.The workers get help to states and people that may be affected by Hurricane Sandy.  Right now, everyone is focused on getting prepared before the storm may hit.  Here is a picture from inside the big room showing all the workers.During times of emergency,...
Posted On: October 28, 2012
Author: Bob Boyd
Editor's Note: The views expressed by Bob Boyd do not necessarily represent the official views of the United States, the Department of Homeland Security, or the Federal Emergency Management Agency. FEMA does not endorse any non-government organizations, entities, or services.Agility, while obviously an organization focused on disaster preparedness and recovery, is also a collection of individuals who share a common desire to help.We earn a living providing critical post disaster assistance to our members across the continent, but in addition, our leadership has answered a calling to offer...
Posted On: October 15, 2012
Author: Richard Serino
Last Friday, I had the opportunity to meet the second group of the inaugural class of FEMA Corps during their induction ceremony in Vinton, Iowa.  Soon, this group will join their fellow FEMA Corps inductees in regional offices and joint field offices around the country.  Similar to the induction ceremony in Vicksburg, I couldn’t help but come away from this ceremony energized, knowing this group of young people is sharply focused on making a difference in their world – particularly in the lives of disaster survivors.For those that don’t know, FEMA Corps is a program that...
Posted On: October 4, 2012
Author: Lars Anderson
Washington, D.C., Sep. 28, 2012 -- FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate and United Negro College Fund Special Programs (UNCFSP) Interim President and CEO, Michael J. Hester, sign memorandums of agreement between UNCFSP and FEMA.As a federal agency, there are lots of policies, procedures, and agreements that dictate how you do business.  The best of these documents are the ones that are flexible, have practical implications regardless of who the leadership is, and inspire action that makes a positive impact.  Last week, FEMA signed a memorandum of agreement with the UNCF Special Programs...
Posted On: October 3, 2012
Author: Flat Stanley and Flat Stella
Did you know every state has its own emergency management office? A lot of big cities do too. We got to check out the Washington, D.C. Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency (D.C. HSEMA) and we learned a lot about the important work people do at these offices every day.First, HSEMA let us peek into their Emergency Operations Center.   Even though the room was empty, when there’s an emergency, it’s filled with people busy working to make things better.  The room fills with people from lots of different places -- federal agencies like FEMA, businesses like power...
Posted On: October 2, 2012
Author: David Myers
Roland Phillips, a leader of the French and Indian community called Grand Bayou in Plaquemines Parish, LA, had ridden out five hurricanes, including Katrina. So he decided to stay put for Hurricane Isaac, which hit land on Aug. 29, 2012. “I’ll never stay through a storm again,” Phillips told me. “It was the worst I ever experienced. It stayed on top of us for two days and two nights; it just ate us up.”CAPTION: LaPlace, La., Sep. 13, 2012 -- Volunteers from Samaritan’s Purse International Relief install blue tarp to keep rain from a home damaged by Hurricane Isaac.Hurricane Isaac may not have...
Posted On: September 25, 2012
Author: Shannon Arledge
At FEMA’s Center for Domestic Preparedness, there is now a new venue where first responders can receive invaluable, hands-on training: a subway. The subway features four full size cars complete with lighting, smoke, seating, video capability, and even realistic commercial signage that is common in subways.CAPTION: The CDP created a rail system that uses four cars. One car features a tunnel collapse scene, while another is damaged by an improvised explosive device. The subway system requires a response by emergency personnel to triage and extricate survivors, and mitigate the scene from...
Posted On: September 24, 2012
Author: Craig Fugate
Today, we are welcoming nine new members and reappointing one member to the FEMA National Advisory Council (NAC). Mandated by Congress in the Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006, the mission of the NAC is to ensure effective and ongoing coordination of federal preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation for natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disasters.  The NAC is comprised of state, tribal and local governments, private sector, and non-governmental partners who advise and provide me recommendations on a variety of aspects within...
Posted On: September 21, 2012
Author: Craig Fugate
Last month I emphasized my support for amending the Stafford Act to allow federally recognized tribal governments to make a request directly to the President for a federal emergency or major disaster declaration.  Today, the House of Representatives passed the 2012 FEMA Reauthorization Act, including Section 210, which includes such an amendment to the Stafford Act, and affirms the sovereignty of tribal governments.  If Congress passes and the President signs such legislation into law, my office will act promptly in the development of appropriate regulations and policies for...
Posted On: September 19, 2012

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