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Guidance & Directives

Continuity Guidance Circular (CGC)

The Continuity Guidance Circular (CGC) guides whole community efforts to develop and maintain the capability to ensure continuity of operations, continuity of government, and enduring constitutional government during an emergency that disrupts normal operations. The Circular describes federal and non-federal continuity efforts; outlines whole community continuity roles, responsibilities, and coordinating structures; and describes the process for building and maintaining capabilities to ensure the performance of essential functions and delivery of critical services and core capabilities.

Organizations and governments at all levels can draw upon the CGC as a reference when creating or revising continuity plans, programs, and processes. Many jurisdictions and organizations already have an existing continuity program and plan, and will use the Circular to refine capabilities and processes. 

For additional assistance, please email FEMA-CGC@fema.dhs.gov.

Federal Continuity Directive (FCD) 1

Federal Continuity Directive (FCD) 1 Cover

Federal Continuity Directive 1 (FCD 1), as signed by the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, establishes the framework, requirements, and processes that support the development of executive departments and agencies’ continuity programs and by specifying and defining elements of a continuity plan. These required elements include delineation of essential functions; succession to office and delegations of authority; safekeeping of and access to essential records; continuity locations; continuity communications; human resources planning; devolution of essential functions; reconstitution; and program validation through testing, training, and exercises. The provisions of this directive are applicable at all levels of federal Executive Branch organizations, regardless of their location, and are useful for all non-federal entities.

This directive supersedes Federal Continuity Directive 1, dated October 28, 2012.

Federal Continuity Directive (FCD) 2

Federal Continuity Directive (FCD) 2 Cover

Federal Continuity Directive 2 (FCD 2) implements the requirements of FCD-1, Annex B (Essential Functions), and provides direction and guidance to federal Executive Branch departments and agencies to assist in validation of Mission Essential Functions (MEFs) and Primary Mission Essential Functions (PMEFs). The update and validation of essential functions includes conducting a comprehensive Business Process Analysis (BPA) to understand those processes necessary to the performance of organizational functions and requirements. It also includes conducting a Business Impact Analysis (BIA) to identify potential impacts on the performance of essential functions and the consequences of failure to sustain them. Further, it requires the application of organization-wide risk analysis to inform decision making and strengthen operations through effective risk management. FCD-2 outlines requirements and provides checklists and resources to assist departments and agencies in identifying and assessing their essential functions through a risk-based process and in identifying candidate PMEFs that support the National Essential Functions. This FCD provides guidance for conducting a BPA and BIA to identify essential function relationships, dependencies, time sensitivities, threats, vulnerabilities, consequences, and mitigation strategies related to the performance of the MEFs and PMEFs. This FCD also provides direction on the formalized process for submitting deparments and agencies’ candidate PMEFs in support of the NEFs. To obtain an electronic copy of the MEF/BPA/BIA worksheet, email a request to FEMA-NationalContinuity@fema.dhs.gov.

Continuity Risk Toolkit

The Continuity Risk Toolkit provides general information on risk and techniques that may be used to perform risk analysis. It serves as a continuity resource for stakeholders by providing reference material, information, and guidance intended to further develop and refine risk identification and determine the potential for all-hazard risks to affect the performance of essential functions and essential supporting activities (ESAs). It supports Federal Continuity Directives (FCDs) 1 and 2, which implement the requirements Presidential Policy Directive 40 (PPD-40), National Continuity Policy, and provide guidance to executive branch departments and agencies (D/As) on validation of Mission Essential Functions (MEFs) and Primary Mission Essential Functions (PMEFs). A risk-based approach to business analysis informs decisions that sustain MEFs and PMEFs during all phases of a catastrophic emergency. For additional assistance, email a request to FEMA-NationalContinuity@fema.dhs.gov

Last Updated: 
09/27/2018 - 10:22