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The Other Side of the Yellow Tape ESSNA Forum West Edmonton Mall November 26, 2014 Scott Cameron, The City of Red Deer.

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Presentation on theme: "The Other Side of the Yellow Tape ESSNA Forum West Edmonton Mall November 26, 2014 Scott Cameron, The City of Red Deer."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Other Side of the Yellow Tape ESSNA Forum West Edmonton Mall November 26, 2014 Scott Cameron, The City of Red Deer

2 The Other Side of the Yellow Tape @ESSNetworkAB #essnalearningevent An analysis of the ESS Learning Event Data from the 2013 Southern Alberta Flood

3 Learning Event Goal Communities that activated their Emergency Social Services plans in response to the 2013 Southern Alberta floods have an opportunity to reflect on their experience, identify themes and shared learnings, and explore opportunities to improve systems associated with the activation. ESSNA Learning Event – March 20-21, 2014 High River, Alberta 2013 Southern Alberta Floods

4 Read through raw qualitative data from Learning Event inductively. Developed seven non-mutually exclusive codes/themes that emerged from data: –Successes/Strengths –Communication with Stakeholders –Needs of Affected People –Defining Roles and Responsibilities –Training –Policy and Planning –Funding Learning Event Findings Methodology

5 Coded each piece of data using one of seven colours Organized data by colours; looked for patterns within each theme. Learning Event participants identified strategies for improvement: –Quick Win, Short Term, Longer Term Learning Event Findings Methodology

6 Learning Event Findings Adaptability Communication People-First Approach ESS Strengths and Successes in 2013

7 Areas for Strategic Improvement

8 Communication “Everything we discussed came back to communication. The importance of it, the lack of it. How it led to problems and issues that could have been dealt with in a timely fashion.” Communications with EOC Communications with Provincial Government & AEMA Communication within Municipalities Communications with NGOs Communication with Local and Affected People Learning Event Findings

9 Strategies for Improvement Ensure there is an embargo time prior to the public announcement to allow appropriate numbers of staff and volunteers to prepare (Quick Win – Province of AB) Try to build ESS into the annual AEMA summit so that all emergency services (Quick Win – AEMA) Foster better communication with government department and EOC about making the people/relationship connection (Short Term – ESSNA) Ensure that the right people are communicating information and making decisions (Short Term – Municipal Government) Learning Event Findings

10 Needs of Affected People Focus on Locals Operating the Reception Centre Extending Services Sensitivity Sense of Community Empowering Evacuees Learning Event Findings

11 Strategies for Improvement Ensure that reentry is in ESS Plan (Quick Win– Municipal) Residents at evacuation centre given opportunity to help (Quick Win – Municipal) Recruit volunteers from community (Quick Win – Municipal) Locate resources to help seniors not able to use cots, dropped off without meds, etc. (Longer Term– NGO Council) Address reluctance of many residents to register (Longer Term – NGO Council) Learning Event Findings

12 Defining Roles and Responsibilities Which level of government has responsibilities for which decisions? How do affected municipalities ask for help? Lines of Authority: Local vs. Non-Local Learning Event Findings

13 Strategies for Improvement Sort out relationship with Red Cross (Quick Win – Municipal) Clarify and differentiate EOC and municipal responsibilities (Quick Win – Municipal) Make ESS personnel integral part of decision-making process (Quick Win - Province of Alberta) Organize a forum – “Who’s Who in the Zoo” (Short Term - ESSNA) Create an electronic registration form that will work Alberta-wide (Longer Term - Province of AB ) Template forms – overtime for staff and cost-recovery processes (Longer Term - Municipal Government) Determine appropriate roles for political leaders (Longer Term - Municipal) Learning Event Findings

14 Training Regional Collaborative Training Database of Contacts Re-entry and Recovery Issues Mitigating Staff and Volunteer Burnout Learning Event Findings

15 Strategies for Improvement Develop standardized forms for tracking time and payroll (Quick Win – ESSNA) Prepare database of people trained in ESS management and promote it to municipalities (Quick Win – ESSNA) Use database of volunteers from 2013 to create and train teams (Quick Win – Municipal) Hold training and practice at least once a month (Quick Win – Municipal) Develop plan for the kind of tasks volunteers will be needed for (Quick Win – Municipal) Learning Event Findings

16 Strategies for Improvement Plan Table-tops in spring and fall every year (Short Term – Municipal) Develop team leaders for all critical functions in operating evacuation centre (Short Term – Municipal) Define process for overriding normal rules for health inspectors (Longer Term – NGO) Create rotational work schedules and responsibilities, allowing for mentorship of junior staff (Longer Term – ESSNA) Learning Event Findings

17 Policy and Planning Common Templates and Documents for ESSNA Inclusion of ESS within ICS Pre-established contracts Identifiable and Transparent Lines of Command Learning Event Findings

18 Strategies for Improvement Develop a regional cooperative group with emergency management and ESS (Quick Win – Regional Collaboration) Make people in leadership positions easily identifiable (Quick Win – Municipal) Modify ICS to incorporate section chief for ESS (Quick Win – Municipal) Lobby government to set up training standards for ESS (Short Term – Regional Collaboration) Standardization of forms and agreements, province-wide (Short Term – ESSNA) Adopt provincially standardized registration system (Longer Term – Other) Learning Event Findings

19 Funding ESS as small part of job duties More funding to support ESS work Dedicated, full-time or part-time, ESS Staff Learning Event Findings

20 In Conclusion

21 Breakdown of Responsibility for Strategies –45% municipal –15% ESSNA –Balance was AEMA, Provincial Government, Regional Collaboration, NGO’s, etc. Local officials and volunteers in best position to move recommendations forward Municipalities should clarify roles within and roles with external organizations Most emergency planning accounts for only the first few days of event Community-development approach: Involving affected people as volunteers. Learning Event Findings

22 In Conclusion Recommendations for ESSNA –Improving communication among stakeholders –Developing and sharing best practices –Supporting ESS training in Alberta Recommendations for Province of AB –Consult ESS staff and local government prior to making decisions –Have operating standards in place prior to disaster Recommendations for AEMA –Take emergency social services staff more seriously, involve them in EOC activities and training exercises, communicate with ESSNA, and recognize the important role that social services play in a disaster Learning Event Findings

23 Your insights and perspectives are important to the growth and development of our network. Please let us know what you thought of this session. FEEDBACK ESSNA is a continuous learning organization

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