Neighbours helping neighbours
In the critical hours following a crisis situation, while local and provincial response agencies are dealing with the immediate and urgent needs of the municipality, residents in affected communities need to be prepared to help themselves and to assist their neighbours, who may have been seriously impacted by the event.
Joint Emergency Management (JEM) is a concept developed by the Halifax Regional Municipality's Emergency Management Office (EMO), to allow community organizations to prepare for,and respond quickly to, a wide range of emergencies. JEM teams are the commuinty volunteers of EMO. In times of crises, EMO will activate JEM Support Centres (JSC) to coordinate humanitarian response to the JEM coverage area. These centres are a facility where trained individuals can meet to provide local input to the Emergency Operations Centre, located in Dartmouth. Currently there are five such JEMs in the municipality:
ATS provides EMO with trained telecommunications operators in support of, or to augment, telecommunications systems normally used by responding agencies when regular systems become damaged or overloaded by an emergency incident or a disaster.
To train volunteers to handle important message traffic in a uniform and professional manner
To establish a call-out system to rapidly deploy telecommunications support assets when activated by EMO.
To maintain, test and utilize parallel telecommunications systems.
To support Joint Emergency Management sites and Comfort Centres as required.
To participate in telecommunications exercises, in order to enhance operator skills, as well as, to test redundant systems.
To provide or augment telecommunications at incident, or other sites as directed.