When a radicalized gunman opened fire inside an El Paso Walmart, he not only took the lives of 22 people, he struck fear and pain into the hearts of Latinos all across the country. While there are still forces at the highest levels of government who continue to exacerbate that pain with hateful rhetoric, it is critical for Latino policymakers and all Americans to come together and unite around rejecting white supremacy, opposing dangerous rhetoric, and denouncing racist violence in all its forms.
As elected and appointed officials on the frontlines of their communities, we know how important it is for NAEO members to have the tools and resources they need to be prepared for tragedy whenever it hits. Understanding the dynamics of these kinds of violent events is vital to maintaining best practices and policies that will enable our Latino leaders to best respond to such emergencies.
When disasters strike, communities look to their leaders for support. With adequate emergency preparedness, elected and appointed officials can help communities be ready for such events and be positioned to recover in the face of adversity. Here is a list of resources on emergency preparedness that will help ensure NALEO members are equipped to be effective leaders for their communities in the wake of tragedies like the El Paso shooting.
Active Shooter Preparedness Program – U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Active shooter incidents are often unpredictable and evolve quickly. In the midst of the chaos, anyone can play an integral role in mitigating the impacts of an active shooter incident. DHS aims to enhance preparedness through a “whole community” approach by providing products, tools, and resources to help you prepare for and respond to an active shooter incident.
Guide for Developing High Quality Emergency Operation Plans for Houses of Worship
The guide provided recommendations in the development of plans not only to respond to an emergency, but also outline how organizations can plan for preventing, protecting against, mitigating the impact of and recovering from these emergencies.
VIDEO: Options for Consideration Active Shooter Training, from U.S. Department of Homeland Security
The Options for Consideration video demonstrates possible actions to take if confronted with an active shooter scenario. The video also shows how to assist authorities once law enforcement enters the scene.
FBI Active Shooter Resources
Although local and state law enforcement agencies are virtually always the first ones on the scene, the FBI has played a large role in supporting the response to every major incident in recent years and has much to offer in terms of capacity, expertise, specialized capabilities, training, and resources before and after an incident occurs. The successful prevention of these active shooter incidents lies with a wide range of public and private entities all working together. Once an active shooter incident occurs, the FBI proactively assists state, local, campus, and tribal law enforcement first responders to supplement resources as needed.
Report – Crime, Violence, Discipline, and Safety in U.S. Public Schools
Findings From the School Survey on Crime and Safety: 2017–18
Using data from the School Survey on Crime and Safety (SSOCS), this report presents findings both on crime and violence in U.S. public schools and on the practices and programs schools have implemented to promote school safety. Developed and managed by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) of the U.S. Department of Education, SSOCS has been administered seven times, most recently during the 2017–18 school year.
SSOCS collects information from public school principals about the prevalence of violent and serious violent crimes occurring in their schools. Portions of this survey also focus on school security measures, school security staff, the availability of mental health services, parent and community involvement at school, and staff training. SSOCS data can be used to examine the relationship between violent incidents in schools and the programs, practices, and policies schools have in place to prevent and reduce crime.
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Gun Violence Archive
The Gun Violence Archive is an online archive of gun violence incidents collected from over 6,500 law enforcement, media, government and commercial sources daily in an effort to provide near-real time data about the results of gun violence. GVA is an independent data collection and research group with no affiliation with any advocacy organization.
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Emergency Planning and Preparedness for Healthcare Facilities
When catastrophes like mass shootings, hurricanes, and earthquakes happen and lives are at stake, communities rely on healthcare providers and facilities. For these facilities, an emergency is any event that affects their ability to provide care. After the most recent events in 2017, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is expanding compliance requirements for hospitals and emergency preparedness. This session provided policymakers with an understanding of best practices and guidelines that healthcare providers use to better develop and maintain policies, procedures, communication plans, training and testing to ensure the critical functions that allow them to continue to provide critical medical care are in place.
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Who is in Charge of What? Understanding Federal, State and Local Roles During Emergencies
Emergency response begins at the local level, but when local resources become overwhelmed, it is the state’s role to ensure a well-coordinated response through the combined efforts of local governments, state and federal agencies, and private sector. Understanding the scope of federal and state emergency authorities and how they interact is an important part of preparing for and responding to any type of emergency. This session provided participants with an understanding of the critical role that federal, state, and local governments play in emergency planning and response, with a particular emphasis on the role of Governors, State Legislatures, and State Offices of Emergency Management.
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Building Disaster Resilient Communities
Resilience is a community’s ability to ensure and recover from diverse forms of adversity. Across the United States, many communities have experienced various types of disasters and emergencies that have had devastating effects – reminding us that natural and man-made hazards can take a high toll on communities. The high cost in loss of lives, livelihood and quality of life can be reduced by better managing disaster risks. We can strengthen resilience and improve a community’s ability to maintain and restore vital services in a more timely way and ultimately recover better and stronger. This session highlighted ways elected officials can promote community preparedness, partner with government agencies, community-based organizations, and others to help their communities respond to and recover more effectively and efficiently after disaster strikes.
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