Press Release

For Immediate Release


April 3, 2019 – The New York City Emergency Management Department hosted a Community Preparedness Boot Camp with Community Board 13 in Brooklyn on Friday, March 29. The training, held at the New York Aquarium in Coney Island, targeted community and faith leaders from local organizations, congregations, associations, coalitions, Community Emergency Response Teams (CERTs), and networks interested in creating an emergency plan for their neighborhoods.

“Time after time we find that the most resilient communities are those that are best prepared and connected before a disaster,” New York City Emergency Management Commissioner Joseph Esposito said. “NYC Emergency Management’s Community Preparedness Boot Camp targets community and faith based leaders to develop emergency plans specific to their community needs.”

"Thank you NYC Emergency Management for hosting the Community Preparedness Boot Camp training – everyone who came took important information back to their groups, District Manager of Community Board 13 Eddie Mark said. “We would like to have another one in the fall for those who couldn't make it. Thank you for coming and training our community."

NYC Emergency Management’s Community Preparedness Boot Camp aims to connect community networks with the resources available to prepare them before the next emergency. To do this, NYC Emergency Management utilizes the Community Emergency Planning toolkit. The Community Emergency Planning toolkit is an interactive booklet tailored to any community, and used by congregations, housing developments, tenant or civic associations, community boards or coalitions, community-based organizations, or CERTs. From emergencies like hurricanes and heat waves to fires and utility disruptions, the toolkit reviews the varying threats and hazards New Yorkers may face and provides an overview of the key roles communities can play to prepare and respond to emergencies.

The boot camp focuses on creating resilient communities through:

Community Education: Preparing your community through education is the first step you can take in keeping residents safe. NYC Emergency Management offers a number of resources to educate community members on emergency preparedness. One of the resources includes Ready New York, NYC Emergency Management’s public education campaign. Through the program, you can learn about the hazards you may face in New York City and prepare for all types of emergencies by writing an emergency plan, choosing a meeting place, gathering supplies for your home, and preparing a Go Bag. Another resource NYC Emergency Management uses to educate the public is the Partners in Preparedness program. Established in 2011, Partners in Preparedness is a nationally recognized program that supports organizations in preparing their employees, services, and facilities for emergencies.

Emergency Communications: Receiving accurate information during an emergency is essential in determining the required response. Inaccurate information can lead to life threatening consequences in an emergency, making it important to distinguish between official sources of information and unofficial sources. The training informed attendees about official sources of information from the City, such as Notify NYC and New York City Emergency Management social media pages. They also discussed with residents the best practices for spreading the information to their community networks.

Community Emergency Response: Typically, there are two different types of emergency events designated as “notice events” and “no-notice events.” The response of the community includes communicating emergency information to residents, identifying unmet needs and coordinating with the City and members of your network. Attendees learned about an emergency needs assessment, an attempt to rapidly identify basic needs of those affected by the emergency to ensure decision-makers allocate resources accordingly. The assessment focuses on and prioritizes the most urgent needs such as life safety and sustainability. These include medical, evacuation, food, water, housing, clothing, and mental health. Other roles assumed by community networks are checking-in with vulnerable neighbors, and repairing damaged property.

NYC Emergency Management Community Preparedness Program

The Community Preparedness program helps local networks build capacity within their community to prepare for, respond to, and recover from an emergency. This includes training classes and events, a Community Preparedness Council of community and faith-based organizations, and connecting established community networks to the City’s Emergency Operations Center during a disaster. To sign up for the weekly Community Preparedness newsletter to receive information about preparedness initiatives, resources, and local events, click here.


MEDIA CONTACT: Tashawn Brown/Omar Bourne (718) 422-4888

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