National Emergency Preparedness Month 2016

Emergency Preparedness Month provides an opportunity to raise awareness of the important work being done to make sure our communities are safe, healthy, and ready for public health emergencies and/or disasters.

The theme “Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today” is the continuing theme from 2015.  Often families are not with their loved ones when catastrophe strikes, so having up-to-date contact information for those you need to get in touch with during a public health emergency and/or disaster is critical.  It is also possible to collect names and addresses of your neighbors and talking to them one by one so that if something should happen you can call different neighbors and ask what can you do or how can you help.

Ask about plans at the places where family spends the most time: work, school and other places you frequent.  If none exist, consider volunteering to help develop one.  You will be better prepared to safely reunite your family and loved ones during an emergency if you think ahead, and communicate with others in advance.

Over 60 percent of Americans say preparation for natural or man-made disasters is very important to them, however, only a staggering 17 percent of Americans claim to be prepared for an emergency situation, according to a new survey commissioned by the Ad Council.

Disasters can have a major impact on the workplace, both for the people who work there, and to workplace operations.  After a disaster, workplaces cannot recover without their people and people cannot recover without a job to go back to.

Organizations can have tremendous influence on their personnel when it comes to preparing for a disaster.  When employers encourage employees to be prepared for disasters, employees are 75 percent more likely to take action.  And with more than 63 percent of the US population aged 16 or older in the labor force, the workplace is one of the most effective environments for educating and encouraging people to take steps to be ready for disasters, which includes being fully age-appropriate immunized – flu, pneumonia, HPV, MMR, etc.

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno said, “Unfortunately, as we have dealt with here in our own Springfield, it is better to be prepared and forewarned, than not. I commend Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris, Emergency Preparedness Director Bob Hassett, all our brave and dedicated police, firefighters, first responders and associated city departments for always being there in our time of need.”

“Emergencies can happen at any time,” said Helen Caulton-Harris, Springfield Health Commissioner.  “Taking a few simple steps now to prepare yourself, your family and your community makes the entire community more resilient and better able to respond to emergency events.”  All residents, Don’t Wait. CommunicateMake Your Emergency Plan Today.

For further information contact:

                                    Public Health Emergency Preparedness & Response Coordinator

                                    Tony L. Pettaway

                                    (413) 750-2696


                                    National Weather Services





In the News

Women's Fund of Western Mass Announces Partnership

|   People in the News

On Thursday, at the future site of their new downtown headquarters, 276 Bridge Street, the Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts (Women’s Fund) announced a groundbreaking public-private partnership aimed at driving economic prosperity for young women in Springfield.

On Thursday, at the future site of their new downtown headquarters, 276 Bridge Street, the Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts (Women’s Fund) announced a groundbreaking public-private partnership aimed at driving economic prosperity for young women in Springfield.

MassMutual Foundation, Inc. – a dedicated corporate foundation established by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company - also announced that they are awarding $150,000 to the Women’s Fund to support the launch of the innovative project called The Partnership for Young Women’s Progress: Springfield (YWP). As part of the project, Treasurer Goldberg’s office will offer their Women’s Economic Empowerment series, share state agency-generated research and data, and participate in final recommendations. Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Springfield Public Schools assistant superintendent Lydia E. Martinez-Alvarez will also join the project’s leadership team.

“We truly value this partnership that leverages available resources in an innovative and collaborative way,” said Ali Mathias, MassMutual Director of Charitable Giving and Vice President of the MassMutual Foundation. “This program will not only expand the economic opportunity for young women, but also economic development in the city of Springfield.”

"I am thrilled to be participating in this program," said Treasurer Deb Goldberg. "Public-private partnerships, such as this, are crucial in creating opportunities to empower young women across the state."

Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno states, “This is all about empowerment access and pathways to secure better, educational, social and economic development opportunities for the women of our community. My hats off to the MassMutual Foundation – always a great corporate citizen, the Women’s Fund of Western Mass, and Treasurer Deb Goldberg for their continued efforts.”

The YWP will elevate the leadership of local young women (12-24yrs) to help design a lasting blueprint for investing in the Springfield community that addresses the needs, programming, best practices, policies, and research that will build the pathways to economic prosperity for themselves, their families, and their community.

A three-year pilot will allow partners to:

  • Create leadership and high-level decision-making opportunities for young women in Springfield, and reward their efforts as part of a Young Women’s Leadership Advisory Council.

  • Analyze available data, examine current investments, and identify where partners can make a lasting impact.

  • Create a public document with young women’s economic growth and empowerment recommendations.

  • Generate and fund a phased action plan for the region that will include re-granting partnerships.

  • Engage message research conducted by a leading national firm that will help shape strategic communications. These strategic communications will be aimed at creating a positive shift from the current negative cultural narratives regarding young women in Springfield. 

“This project, more than any other, is squarely aligned with the Fund’s mission and its vision for our community,” said Layla Taylor, Women’s Fund Board of Directors President. “What we know from available data is that young people, and particularly young women, are leaving our region for perceived lack of economic opportunity. However, we are invigorated by the leadership of the project’s partners. We stand together because we believe in the young women of Springfield, and are committed to finding solutions to cultivate and retain their talent as a critical component to the future economic success of Springfield and our Region.”



Page last updated:  Thursday, October 19, 2017 11:57 am