Bethpage, NY - February 22, 2014 - Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today attended an event in Nassau County for the Citizen Preparedness Corps Training Program, which will train approximately 100,000 New Yorkers during 2014 in the proper preparation for emergencies or disasters. The program seeks to provide citizens with the tools and resources to prepare for emergencies and disasters, respond accordingly, and recover as quickly as possible to pre-disaster conditions.
“Through the Citizen Preparedness Corps Training program, we are helping communities across New York State be better equipped and prepared for the new reality of more frequent extreme weather,” Governor Cuomo said. “In just the past three years alone, we have seen multiple devastating storms that have disrupted lives and businesses here on Long Island and in other regions of the state. This year, we are going to train 100,000 New Yorkers to be first responders in their homes and communities, which will help make New York State safer and more prepared than ever before.”
Governor Cuomo also recently announced the launch of a new website www.prepare.ny.gov, to serve as the digital home for the Citizen Preparedness Corps community. The website will offer information about additional trainings, disaster preparedness tips, and ways to volunteer your skills in the event of a disaster.
An outpouring of volunteers attended today’s Citizen Preparedness Corps training session, with attendance of approximately 575 people in Nassau County.
The trainings, along with future ones, were led by the New York National Guard who worked with experts from the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services’ Office of Emergency Management and Office of Fire Prevention and Control, and local county emergency management personnel.
Brigadier General Raymond F. Shields, who also attended the training, said "We are pleased to continue training the many volunteers in this important emergency preparedness program. The men and women of the New York Army and Air National Guard are honored to be part of the Governor's program to provide New Yorkers with the tools and resources to better handle emergencies and disasters. Our Soldiers and Airmen understand the importance of being equipped to assist when disasters strikes, and it is important that we share that knowledge and training throughout our communities."
Jerome M. Hauer, Commissioner, NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services said, “Governor Cuomo has made emergency preparedness one of his highest priorities as we face the new reality of extreme weather, and for many that preparedness begins in their own homes. I wholeheartedly support his decisive and hands-on strategy for responding to the often very destructive consequences of a natural disaster. Community members are the first to be affected and typically the first to be on the scene in face of such challenges. It is critical that we provide them with the most practical and efficient preparation, so that when an emergency arises they are well positioned to protect their families and fellow neighbors. This training will prove to be fundamental to future disaster relief efforts.
The training course will provide an introduction to responding to a natural or man-made disaster. Participants will be advised on how to properly prepare for any disaster, including developing a family emergency plan and stocking up on emergency supplies. Proper preparation in the home will be emphasized with encouragement to ensure that smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, along with fire extinguishers, are all available and in proper working order. Trainers will supply information on what organizations can provide additional support; how to register for NY-Alert, the free statewide emergency alert system; and how to be aware of notifications from such sources as the Emergency Broadcast System. Participants will also be encouraged to get more involved in existing community-based emergency activities that may be organized through local schools, businesses or community-based organizations.
Each volunteer or family received a Citizen Preparedness Corps Response Kit that contains key items to assist them in the immediate aftermath of a disaster. As an individual, a family member, and member of their community, it is essential that citizens take a few basic steps to be prepared; their quality of life and their loved ones may depend on it. Often during an emergency, electricity, heat, air conditioning or telephone service may not work. Citizens should be prepared to make it on their own for at least 7-10 days, maybe longer.
Every training participant (one per family) will receive a free Citizen Preparedness Corps Response Starter Kit, which includes:
- Plastic drop cloth
- Light stick
- (2) D Batteries
- First Aid Kit
- Face mask
- Safety goggles
- AM/FM pocket radio with batteries
- (6) packs of drinking water
- (6) food bars
- Regular flashlight
- Emergency blanket
- Duct tape
- Work gloves
- Water bottle
As part of the training, participants will receive information about the other supplies and personal information that they should add to their personal Response Kit.