NYS encourages residents to strengthen emergency planning efforts during National Preparedness Month

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The New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services today encouraged New Yorkers to use September, which has been designated as National Preparedness Month, as an opportunity to strengthen their own household’s preparedness to withstand disasters, whether they be natural or manmade. Disaster preparedness requires an all hands on deck approach by both first responders and average citizens and here in New York, the public has an opportunity to gain all the training and resources they need through the Division’s Citizen’s Preparedness Corps training program. Already, more than 300,000 New Yorkers have completed this training, and in recognition of National Preparedness Month, these trainings will begin to be made available to all state employees through ‘Lunch and Learn’- style trainings during normal business hours.

“The key to surviving an emergency, whether it be an active shooter or a hurricane, isn’t simply knowing what to do when a situation arises, it’s also about making the right preparations ahead of time,” said New York State’s Commissioner of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Patrick A. Murphy. “With National Preparedness Month taking place during September, there is no better time for New Yorkers to sign up for a Citizen’s Preparedness Corps. course and get the tools and resources they need to prepare their families for the next disaster which threatens the Empire State.”

“The Soldiers and Airmen of our New York National Guard understand the value of being prepared for emergencies, since our motto is “Always Ready and Always There,” Major General Ray Shields, Adjutant General of New York.  “We know that we must be ready to respond when called by the Governor. Since 2014, the members of the New York National Guard who conduct Citizens Preparedness Corps training with the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services have been privileged to help our fellow citizens prepare to cope with emergency situations and to be better prepared for the unexpected.”

Established in 2014 under the leadership of Governor Cuomo, the Citizen’s Preparedness Corps provides the tools and resources necessary for preparing New Yorkers for any type of disaster so they respond accordingly and recover as quickly as possible to pre-disaster conditions. It is important to note; individual preparedness should not be limited to the home. With workplaces being increasingly targeted by those seeking to do harm, preparedness in those settings is just as important.

Since the program’s inception, the Division has regularly partnered with private organizations and businesses to hold trainings for their staff and in recognition of National Preparedness Month, these trainings will begin to be offered to state employees once a year through ‘Lunch and Learn’- style trainings during normal business hours. The Division will work with the leadership each State Agency, Division, Authority and Corporation to identify times and locations for each training in the coming weeks.

During each Citizen’s Preparedness Corps course, New Yorkers are taught an all-hazards approach to preparedness, giving them skills which can be utilized in any life-threatening situation, as opposed to developing individualized plans for each type of disaster or emergency. This includes information on how to develop family emergency plans and the importance of stocking up on emergency supplies.

In recent years, the program has been further adapted to include training on the “See Something, Say Something” mantra, as well as an active shooter/active violence component which focuses on situational awareness and incorporates the “Run, Hide, Fight” concept for active shooter training. Participants are also encouraged to get more involved in existing community-based emergency activities which may be organized through local schools, businesses or community-based organizations.

If New Yorkers are interested in attending a public Citizen’s Preparedness Corps training, requesting a private training for their organization, or would like to take the online version, visit prepare.ny.gov. Check back often as new public courses are being added every day.

About the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services
The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services provides leadership, coordination and support for efforts to prevent, protect against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from terrorism and other man-made and natural disasters, threats, fires and other emergencies. For more information, visit the Division’s Facebook, follow @NYSDHSES on Twitter and Instagram, or visit dhses.ny.gov.

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