Prepare With Us
Citywide Emergency Planning & Response
While this Toolkit focuses on enhancing the individual organization’s ability to respond and recover after an incident, it is essential to think about the organization’s larger role in the community and the City's emergency planning efforts. In order for a community to bounce back after a shock, it is essential that community organizations and businesses work together by sharing resources and information in an integrated approach. The City has developed a Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan which outlines roles and responsibilities of City Departments and partners. We cannot rely solely on government to respond quickly to the community’s needs after a crisis. We need your help.
At a minimum, your organization should participate in the City's emergency planning coalitions to ensure a direct connection to emergency officials in a crisis. There are two organizations that are actively coordinating among businesses, non-profits, and government agencies in preparation of an emergency:
Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC)
The Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) consists of stakeholders from businesses, non-profit organizations, and government agencies throughout the region, collaborating together to improve their ability to prepare for and respond to disasters. Each meeting incorporates a short training or presentation on an emergency planning topic to provide attendees with resources to make their organization more resilient the threats and hazards possible in Nashua. The meetings also serve as a good opportunity to bring emergency planning concerns to government officials and to network with other community organizations. The Local Emergency Planning Committee serves as the coordinating entity for the:
- Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) Local Emergency Planning Committee - Under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act, Local Emergency Planning Committees must develop an emergency response plan, review the plan at least annually, and provide information about chemicals in the community to citizens. Plans are developed by Local Emergency Planning Committees with stakeholder participation. The Local Emergency Planning Committee partners closely with Nashua Fire Rescue and the Souhegan Mutual Aid Response Team in this initiative.
- Greater Nashua Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) - Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster is a not-for-profit, nonpartisan membership organization that serves as a forum to share knowledge and resources throughout the disaster cycle (preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation) to help disaster survivors and their communities. To fulfill this mission, the Greater Nashua Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster fosters more effective service to those affected by disaster in our region through convening mechanisms, advocacy, and outreach work. Typical Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster partners include local community non-profits, churches and faith-based organizations, and other community advocates. These are just a few examples of National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster members with local Nashua affiliates.
- Nashua Citizen Corps Council - Citizen Corps programs build on the successful efforts that are in place in many communities around the country to prevent crime and respond to emergencies. The Nashua program serves as a convener of Community Emergency Response Team, Neighborhood Watch, and Medical Reserve Corps efforts in the City.
- Virtual Business Emergency Operations Center - Virtual Business Emergency Operations Center is a virtual public/private sector portal allowing for-profit and not-for-profit private entities to receive and provide critical situational awareness information before, during, and after a disaster event. Local Emergency Planning Committee Members automatically receive updates and notifications during emergencies and receive a direct point of contact for the physical Emergency Operations Center when it is activated.
- Resilient Nashua Initiative - The Resilient Nashua Initiative’s main purpose is to identify acute shocks and chronic stressors impacting the City of Nashua, now and in the future, and collaboratively find solutions to address these complex issues. A primary task is to maintain the City’s Hazard Mitigation Plan as well as the City's Resilience Strategy to reduce risk and improve overall resilience of the community.
The Local Emergency Planning Committee effort requires participation from all community members and organizations to be successful. Visit www.nashuanh.gov/lepc for a schedule of upcoming meetings and previous meeting minutes/presentations.
This video is geared towards non-governmental organizations, community-based organizations, and faith-based organizations who find themselves taking an active role in disaster response and recovery in their communities. This video helps these groups understand how they connect to the Office of Emergency Management and to each other.
Can your organization provide community service to others following a disaster? Identify and build local relationships to create a SERVICE component in your preparedness program.
Greater Nashua Healthcare Emergency Response Coalition
The Greater Nashua Healthcare Emergency Response Coalition (HERC) provides a forum for the healthcare community to interact with response agencies to promote emergency preparedness. This coalition also fosters communication between local, regional, and state entities for community-wide emergency planning, response and recovery. Please contact the Regional Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coordinator for more information or to get involved.
How Can You Help?
Your organization may also have resources that can be leveraged during an emergency. This can range from equipment, staff who can serve as volunteers, supplies, or even a facility that can be used for temporary emergency use (cooling center, warehousing space, etc).
The Greater Nashua Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD) component of the Local Emergency Planning Committee focuses on ways to integrate local faith-based groups and community non-profits into the City's emergency plans. The Virtual Business Emergency Operations Center (VBEOC) is a tool for the Local Emergency Planning Committee to share information and resources with businesses in the community which may have services to contribute to the emergency response. The Local Emergency Planning Committee can serve as a direct contact for your organization during an emergency and the Emergency Operations Center has been activated.
Community Organization Database
It is more challenging to integrate your organization into the communitywide plan if we don't know how to contact you or the resources you can contribute. The Local Emergency Planning Committee has developed an online form to better catalog emergency contact information and resources that may be available from our businesses and non-profits.
The primary purpose of the database below is to obtain accurate contact information for your organization to ensure City public safety officials can share information prior to, during, and after an emergency (updates during snowstorms, significant utility disruptions, etc). We regularly provide email updates and situation reports to our community partners so that they can better plan their operations during disruptive events and incidents. We will invite your organization to upcoming Local Emergency Planning Committee meetings and local in-person emergency training courses.
The database also obtains three emergency contacts that are shared with Nashua Fire Rescue and Nashua Police Department Dispatch, to ensure they have updated after-hours contact info for your facility. In the event something happens at your facility in the middle of the night, both dispatch centers will have multiple contacts to ensure someone is notified.
The database also requests information about resources or services you may be able to contribute during an emergency. Do you have a box truck that could be used to transport supplies during an emergency? Does your organization have a corporate volunteering initiative that might be able to assist with disaster relief efforts? Does your non-profit have specialized skills that can be utilized during an emergency (feeding, sheltering, clean-up, information technology, etc). You would be surprised about the unique and useful resources our community partners have been able to provide during all sizes of emergencies.
Finally, our form asks if you would be willing to "Share Your Space" during an emergency. The purpose is to identify community spaces that could potentially support the City's emergency operations. This survey assists the efforts Nashua Office of Emergency Management in preparing and coordinating emergencies on the neighborhood level. Given the details required, it is best if someone familiar with the technical details of the space completes the survey. We also require 24/7/365 points of contact and expect those identified to be the ones who could confirm Nashua first responders or emergency management's use of the space.
Nashua Office of Emergency Management knows that using known community spaces is critical to assisting residents during emergency times. Providing information on a community space does not guarantee that it will be used in an emergency. However, given the ever-changing needs of emergencies, having the information already available to the City increases the ability to get a site up and running.
Nashua Office of Emergency Management will use the information provided in the Local Emergency Planning Committee Membership Form to build a database that may be used as a resource for the City. All information will be kept strictly confidential. The only required sections of the form are the contact information fields for Emergency Management and our Police and Fire Dispatch centers. Information about resources, services, and facilities you may be willing to share is optional. If you have any questions or would like to meet with us to discuss your role during a citywide emergency, please contact us.
Fill out our form here: Local Emergency Planning Committee Membership & Emergency Contact Info Database