Emergency Management Programs

Prior to the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Center our nation’s emergency preparedness was essential “Eye Wash”. There was no longer the lingering threat of nuclear war being hung over the heads of the citizens as it was during the 60’s. People were generally content and felt secure in their own corner of the world. The general consensus was topically, “It won’t happen here.”

After the terrible wake-up call in New York City, our disaster preparedness experienced a new and invigorating revival. New agencies came to light while older ones were shuffled under these new creations for simplistic management and control. Along with the movement of emergency agencies came a rush of advanced directives meant to prevent, respond and recover from any future tragic mishaps whether they be manmade or of natural forces.

I view the three major training components here in Delaware which deal with emergency management as FEMA, DEMA and CERTS. We are all familiar with the Federal Emergency Management Agency. This agency coordinates many exceptional classes in emergency management which are then incorporated within various training regiments at various level of government and within the civilian atmosphere.

Next I mention DEMA. The Delaware Emergency Management Agency is but one of fifty state emergency facilities. You will likely find one of your own within the boarders of your state. Once again this agency and their sister groups throughout America offer classes based upon the firm principles established by FEMA but slanted towards your own states risks.

Lastly, we come to the lowest level of EM training on the totem pole. The CERTS work at the city or county level and are generally the first responders to local incidents. Community Emergency Response Team’s are actually restricted as to what responses they may provide.

I have taken a multitude of classes through FEMA and DEMA and feel that the level of professionalism is extremely high. Unlike the two agencies stated above the CERTS main core of workers consist of mostly volunteers. There are a number of additional agencies which offer some sort of emergency action training such as the Homeland Security, many colleges and universities, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) as well as the CDC or Center for Disease Control. Training does not stop there however; in addition to those classes offered by the various governmental agencies we have many others available from the “for profit” and “non-profit” groups.

My ultimate goal is to obtain a position within the emergency management environment. It is unlikely that any changes made in the various training programs would discourage me from obtaining my goals at this time.

By Joseph Parish

Copyright @2010 Joseph Parish