Yesterday, I spoke to FEMA Deputy Administrator Tim Manning who is coordinating theÂ National Dialogue on Preparedness and the Local, State, Tribal, and Federal Preparedness Task Force for the agency.
Manning wanted to remind preparedness stakeholders, including the public, that there are two days left to contribute a new idea — or offer a comment and vote on an existing one — to the Dialogue. The website can be found at http://preparedness.ideascale.com/.
Thus far, there have been 246 suggestions,Â 388 comments and 2867 votes posted by 759 users. With this web-based tool, users submit their ideas, the community discusses and votes for them, with the most popular suggestions bubbling up to the top. Right now, educating the public on preparedness are two of the three recommendations with the most votes.
The Dialogue will complement the work of the Preparedness Task Force which wasÂ created at the direction of Congress. The Task Force is comprised of 35 local, state, and tribal members and 24 Federal ex officio members with diverse expertise in homeland security and emergency management. It was formed to assess the state of disaster preparedness and make recommendations for improvement throughout the nation. The panel has been meeting since April and is expected to release a report next month.
Manning says the Task Force has been looking at all aspects of the nation’s preparedness initiatives, many of which date to the creation of the Department of Homeland Security more than seven years ago. He adds that the group will be addressing some basic questions, including, “What are we trying to achieve? How do we measure effectiveness? What have been the effectiveness of grant programs?”
To contribute to the Dialogue (by the deadline of September 10th), click here. If you would prefer to submit your comments, ideas or recommendations directly to the Task Force, send them by email to FEMA-Preparedness-Task-Force@fema.gov (also by the 10th).