The future of responder family preparedness: the new normal
Hulings, James T.
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The U.S. government has recently contended that communities cannot be prepared without first ensuring the safety of responders and their families. Organizations have generally done little to nothing to ensure that the families of their responders are adequately prepared to survive and function on their own in the absence of the responder. Consequently, there exists a widespread policy gap concerning family preparedness in the first-responder community. Research indicates that much of the U.S. population has ignored the U.S. governments preparedness message and opted not to prepare. This thesis used a selection research method to explore whether the development and execution of a family preparedness program would assist the Delaware State Police (DSP) in maintaining its capability during a major crisis. Good ideas and precedent for creating such policy were captured from existing literature, leading to the conclusion that the DSP should mandate a comprehensive family preparedness program that includes emergency records management, the development of family liaison troopers, and go-kits for families as issued equipment. The thesis further concludes that responder family preparedness is different from general citizen preparedness and that leaving it in the optional category is insufficient.
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