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Policies and Procedures — Consultation

Emergency Preparedness and Response Standard (DRAFT FOR CONSULTATION)

This document has been reviewed extensively by select Group Commissioners and Scouts Canada staff, but it has not yet been formally approved, and does not yet represent requirements for Scouting adventures.

This is your opportunity to read the document and to provide your feedback—please use the form at the bottom of page, and share your thoughts by August 16. We value your feedback, and we will use your constructive criticisms, questions and ideas to make this resources as clear, sensible and robust as possible. Thank you in advance for your contributions.

Emergency Preparedness and Response Standard (DRAFT FOR CONSULTATION)

Background 

The actions taken in the immediate stages of an emergency are critical. Whether it is a largescale event that potentially impacts our properties, meeting locations, or camps that requires a warning to members to evacuate or shelter: for example; in the recent flooding in Quebec or Calgary; the wildfires in BC; or the tornadoes in Saskatchewan or Ottawa. It can also be on a more local scale: for example: an indoor meeting activity, an outdoor event or short-term camp where there is a need to call for help to public emergency services. For Scouts Canada activities, youth, volunteers and employees are trained to administer first aid or perform CPR which can be lifesaving. However, emergencies are not limited to personal injury requiring emergency first aid – they can also impact our assets, properties, environment and / or reputation.

The most important step in Emergency Preparedness is planning. To develop an emergency response plan (ERP) the first step is to conduct a risk assessment to identify potential emergency scenarios – things that may realistically happen. This enables us to determine resource requirements and to develop plans and procedures to prepare our Groups, Sections or Councils. At the very least, every facility (meeting location, camp, Scouts Canada property) should develop and implement an emergency plan for protecting youth, volunteers, employees, visitors, contractors and anyone else in the facility. This part of includes building evacuation (“fire drills”), sheltering from severe weather such as tornadoes or wildfire.

The Scouts Canada Emergency Preparedness and Response Standard ensures our members can properly manage emergency situations that could impact our:

  • stakeholders
  • environment
  • assets (e.g. buildings, camps, machinery, vehicles, properties)
  • financial condition
  • reputation

Our Standard

  1. This Standard applies to all departments, functions, councils, staff, volunteers, and those acting in support of our activities. It provides guidance for consistent, co-ordinated, and effective management of emergencies.
  2. Emergency management: A formal process is in place for documenting, reviewing, assessing, and implementing an appropriate Emergency Response Plan (ERP) for all departments, functions, councils, staff, volunteers, and those acting in support of our activities.
  3. This Standard ensures:
    1. Emergency Response Plans (ERPs) are in place, appropriate, risk-based, and tested.
    2. Adequate resources (people, facilities, and equipment) are in place to implement those plans
    3. Training for those plans is completed (as appropriate)
    4. Assessment and maintenance of emergency preparedness are regularly conducted
  4. Emergency management: A formal process is in place for documenting, reviewing, assessing, and implementing an appropriate Emergency Response Plan (ERP) for all departments, functions, councils, staff, volunteers, and those acting in support of our activities.
  5. Mandatory actions:
    1. Emergency Preparedness
      1. Scouts Canada Properties, Camps and Councils will create and maintain an ERP that addresses all credible and significant risk as appropriate.
      2. Each Group and Section (e.g. Colony, Pack, Troop, Company and Crew) must create an ERP for their local meeting place(s) and for each Category 2 and 3 adventure activity (as part of the Adventure Activity Approval Process).
    2. Emergency Response Plans (ERPs):
      1. All ERPs will be supported by a current risk and impact assessment
      2. The responsible person, Key 3 or Commissioner will identify potential emergencies and test the effectiveness of the ERP
      3. All ERPs will be implemented and tested with appropriate routine training, exercises, and drills to ensure emergency-response teams are prepared.
      4. All ERPs will include:
        1. how to assess an emergency situation – specific to the prevailing risks
        2. plans to mobilize response personnel and agencies
        3. how to establish communication among everyone involved
      5. All ERPs will be:
        1. documented in appropriate detail commensurate with risk
        2. integrated with relevant business-continuity and crisis-management plans
        3. readily available to appropriate personnel
        4. communicated to employees, volunteers, and stakeholders
        5. reviewed and revised when needed, especially after an emergency
    3. Emergency Response
      1. If an incident is determined to be an emergency, we declare an emergency and use our ERP
      2. Emergency response personnel or teams shall follow the direction in the ERP

Measure and Verification

  • ERPs will be maintained that meet or exceed the requirements outlined in this Standard

Review and Improve Cycle

  • We shall conduct an initial review of this Standard after 24 months
  • We shall complete subsequent reviews every three years, or more frequently as required by regulatory changes, BP&P or identified deficiencies

Related Policies and Standards

Related Procedures

Resources / Guidelines / Tools

Feedback on the Emergency Management Standard

Please provide your thoughts on the content above. Scouts Canada welcomes your suggestions, questions and concerns. All feedback provided will be read and considered, and we will do our best to incorporate the valuable advice and direction we receive to enhance this resource. Please indicate the specific section(s) you are commenting on. Be as specific as possible when providing your feedback. Thank you!

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