Everyone can contribute to safeguarding the nation from harm.” This sentiment, expressed by President Obama, is the foundation of Presidential Policy Directive 8 (PPD-8). PPD-8, signed by President Obama in March 2011, calls on all levels of government, the private and nonprofit sectors, and individual citizens to play a more active and well-defined role in strengthening the nation’s security and resiliency. PPD-8 sets a vision for an America that is prepared for our greatest risks, such as terrorist attacks, natural disasters, or pandemics. The directive calls for a number of actions to be taken in the near term to improve our security and resilience.

With help from across the whole community, FEMA and its partners have created a National Preparedness Goal, which sets the vision for building a more resilient and secure nation, and a National Preparedness System, which identifies the programs, processes and tools for achieving that vision.You also helped inform the contents of the first annual National Preparedness Report. The Report documents the significant progress the nation has made in the areas of prevention, protection, mitigation, response and recovery.

FEMA and its partners are now focusing on the next set of activities. This forum provides an opportunity to provide input into the development of these activities over the coming months. Your ideas and votes help us understand what works in the real world — in your community, school, or business. Together, we can make the nation more resilient and secure.

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Preparation & Hope are Life Saving

A study by the U.S. Dept. of Defense (DOD) disclosed that American prisoners of the North Vietnamese communists (during the Vietnam War) died at a much faster rate if they lacked strong religious conviction, or some other basis of hope for the future. In my three years of combat, during that same war, I discovered that the very best jungle survivors had several survival courses, over a period of years, starting with the ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Target & Hazard Classifications

Part of the defense against natural and man-made disasters is making responsible authorities and the public more aware of targets, and their related hazards in our target-rich nation. As an example, most of us know that a dam might be damaged by several types of disasters, and if its reservoir waters are suddenly released, the hazard is usually high. A dam therefore needs high target and high hazard classifications. ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Captain Robert Kamansky, MSC,DC-FBI-CJIS TRAINED FORENSICS, NCIC

THE FOCUS OF PPD-8 IS NATIONAL EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS .H.R. 570 THE DENTAL EMERGENCY RESPONDER ACT OF 2011 NOW BEFORE A SENATE SUBCOMMITTEE DOES JUST WHAT PPD-8 DEMANDS. I JUST RETURNED FROM AN ATLANTA COMBINED ADA-SCDI-FBI-INTERPOL MEETING WHERE ALL PRESENT KNEW THAT H.R. 570 WAS CRITICAL TO USE OUR NATIONS DENTAL PROFESSION AT THE HIGHEST LEVELS IN ANY NATIONAL EMERGENCY. WITHOUT H.R. 570 THAT I HAVE WORKED CLOSELY ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Planning for Rapid Urban Emergency Evacuation(s)

There are some potential major disasters that may require rapid urban evacuation of large numbers of people. Our transportation systems were not designed or constructed to facilitate such mass movement of people within a limited time. Large numbers of vehicles, all attempting to move at the same time, soon drain fuel supplies ...and the passengers soon consume available food, while over-crowding sanitation facilities. ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Preparation for Information Technology Failures

Most American cannot even imagine how they would now sustain themselves without information technology at their "fingertips." Yet, any one of several possible types of cyberterrorist attacks could make our information systems and computers ineffective for many long hours. There are several significant potential disasters that may occur during this type of event based on the fact that many of our utilities and critical ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Encourage Forum Participation

To "grow" our emergency preparedness capabilities, all ideas (good, mediocre and bad) need to be encouraged and debated. Positive things can even come from suggestions that seem foolish. As part of this effort, we need to respect each other to encourage all levels of participation. Use of negative and abusive language defeats the purpose of this forum. I have not experienced this myself, but I know other forum members ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Where are buffers being addressed

I feel there may be a major omission within these new sets of directives. As most are all very well aware, within the flood mitigation, buffers offer significant protection. Upland buffers such as forests, wetlands, floodplains…protect downstream communities. Off shore buffers such as barrier islands, spits, reefs… protect our coastlines. Buffers provide a very low cost coast risk reduction if maintained. They ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Micro Preparedness: High Likelihood AND High Consequence Events

We have developed a series of household preparedness efforts centered around high consequence "disasters" which seems unrealistic to community members. Often times, this leads to the question: "Why should I prepare so intensely for something that is not likely to happen?" This is a challenge to those charged with preparedness education; especially in the northeast. We have an opportunity to incorporate basic safety ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

The Ready Initiative

The Ready Initiative leverages game play and the tools of the technology generation (the internet, social networking, and mobile communication) to enable individuals, families, small businesses, and communities to prepare for disasters, and to increase the effectiveness of FEMA in mitigating, managing, and communicating disaster impacts for those who are most in need (and historically the least ready) when a disaster ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Financial Disaster Preparedness - FEMA is spread too thin

It is predicted that 2011 was the most expensive year for disasters globally in recorded history -- $350B in economic losses. Yet only $108B was covered by insurance. The US had twelve billion dollar events this year alone and FEMA needed more emergency funding. The cost of disasters is increasing and FEMA is being spread too thin. We should work to find ways to transfer the financial risk (and cost) of these disasters ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Integrate Social Media & Web 2.0 Technology into Operations

There are many tools available to help share information such as video, text, images, maps & sound. There are many different types of social media (twitter, youtube, FB, mapping). Social Media and Web 2.0 technology can handle larger capacities, is scalable, flexible and adaptable. This should be integrated into the day to day operations building community resilience between officials, agencies, and civilians (all-of-Nation) ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

HSPD-8 vs. PPD8

HSPD-8 vs. PPD8 Sitting here, rereading both of these documents...I am still trying to figure out what the REAL differences are between them. Considering the fact that the HSPD-8 is referenced in many areas of FEMA documentation, and that there really is no MAJOR changes from the HSPD-8, one can only wonder if this directive was issued as a political move, which really has no merit in emergency planning, or if it is ...more »

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Presidential Policy Directive 8

Create comprehensive seismic safety plan

Encourage communities in seismically active areas to create long-range plans for seismic safety in privately owned buildings. San Francisco has created a draft 30-year plan with 50 important steps that will be taken to retrofit our buildings, strengthen our communities, and prepare in advance for the next big earthquake. Here in California, we know a big one is coming, it's just a question of when, where, and how large. ...more »

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