Tuesday, December 29, 2020

DomPrep Journal: The New Age of Police Reform Special Issue, December 2020


  Special Issue

December 2020

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After a hurricane impacts a community, a common practice is not just to rebuild the homes and businesses, but to build them back stronger to withstand greater winds and higher flood waters. This same concept is emerging in law enforcement. Growing social and political pressures have threatened the traditional law enforcement establishment. However, these pressures have led to agencies finding new ways to build back stronger and fortify their relationships within and between communities.

Today’s law enforcement is faced with challenges in four key areas: public consent, rule of law, restrained use of force, and independence from political influence. Adding to these challenges is the global exposure of local events through social media and news outlets. For example, a tragic death in one city can spark protests and demonstrations in other cities around the world. This widespread outcry has spurred calls for police reform across numerous jurisdictions.

Years of staffing and retention challenges were a sign of a growing problem, but sometimes it takes a crisis for true change to begin. In 2020, the compilation of law enforcement challenges and incidents, social and political unrest, and even a pandemic pushed talks of police reform to the forefront. Amid the crises, opportunities and strategies to reconnect law enforcement with the communities they serve have emerged – with accountability and transparency leading the discussion.

Combining public pressure with a new presidential administration, police reform efforts are likely to continue building momentum in the upcoming year at the local, state, and national levels. This publication of “The New Age of Police Reform” provides an overview of how law enforcement agencies are addressing modern challenges and domestic preparedness concerns, determining training needs, and rebuilding trust.

Although changing the inside culture and external perception of a long-standing institution is a difficult task, significant change is on the horizon. This special edition of the DomPrep Journal highlights a series of articles and podcasts that describe what law enforcement agencies are doing or plan to do to help rebuild community trust, ensure accountability and oversight, and promote intergovernmental cohesion.

Catherine L. Feinman

New York Bans Most Evictions as Tenants Struggle to Pay Rent


New York Bans Most Evictions as Tenants Struggle to Pay Rent

The Legislature, addressing the hardship caused by the pandemic, is convening an unusual special session between Christmas and New Year’s to pass the measure.

Housing activists gathered to call for cancellation of rent in Brooklyn in July.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

$100,00.00 Awards for Communities. Secure Rural Schools Program Funding Opportunity Department of the Interior Bureau of Land Management



Department of the Interior.  Bureau of Land Management

BLM ORWA Secure Rural Schools Program Funding Opportunity Synopsis 1


Eligible Applicants:State governments
County governments
Public and State controlled institutions of higher education
Nonprofits that do not have a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education
Private institutions of higher education
Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education

Independent school districts
Native American tribal organizations (other than Federally recognized tribal governments)
Special district governments
Public housing authorities/Indian housing authorities
City or township governments
Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized)

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Making Cities Resilient-UNDRR


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Dear participating cities and stakeholders of the Making Cities Resilient Campaign,


Ten years ago, in 2010, the Making Cities Resilient (MCR) Campaign was launched at the Resilient Cities event organized by ICLEI in a city of Bonn, Germany, as a global advocacy campaign aiming to raise awareness on disaster risk reduction and resilience at the local level.


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Over the past ten years 4,360 cities worldwide have joined the Campaign and benefited from the Ten Essentials for Making Cities Resilient, the Disaster Resilience Scorecard for Cities and various other tools and knowledge products, resulting in enhanced understanding and collaboration as well as the development of local DRR strategies and its implementation.


Though the MCR Campaign is ending in 2020, the legacy will continue through the new initiative “Making Cities Resilient 2030 (MCR2030)”. Building upon the ten-year experience of the MCR Campaign, MCR2030 will support cities with a clear roadmap and access to a suite of tools to reduce risks and build resilience. A collaboration among partners including the World Bank, Resilient Cities Network, UN-HABITAT, ICLEI, UCLG, WCCD, UNOPS, IFRC, JICA and others, it aims to support cities through advocacy, planning and implementation of risk reduction and resilience plans. MCR2030 will be operational from January 2021 until the end of 2030. The ultimate aim of MCR2030 is to ensure cities become inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable by 2030 as a direct contribution to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 11 (SDG11) and other global frameworks for sustainable development action including the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Paris Agreement and the New Urban Agenda.


The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) and the MCR Campaign partners would like to acknowledge the engagement, support and contribution from all national and local governments, role model cities, champions, advocates, and all partners in each corner of the world. Without your support, the Campaign would not have been this successful in engaging cities in making their cities resilient. We look forward to our continued collaboration in the MCR2030! Bonn,  Germany, as a global advocacy campaign aiming to raise awareness on disaster risk reduction and resilience at the local level.





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How the MCR Campaign has supported cities around the world?


Kathryn Oldham, Chief Resilience Officer, Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), United Kingdom, one amongst the 56 Role Model Cities of the MCR Campaign, mentioned at the Launch of the Making Cities Resilient 2030 on 28 October 2020, “… We completed the Disaster Resilience Scorecard which led us to improve our governance mechanisms, broadened the range of stakeholders engaged in resilience and so further enhanced the recognition of DRR as a city priority. We have therefore been able to use the Making Cities Resilient Campaign as a springboard to enable systems to join together in thinking and planning around disaster resilience. When COVID struck, this meant that we were able to quickly bring together the whole city system to develop a cross-sector response to this disaster,”


Sioux Campbell, Disaster Management Community Resilience Officer, Cairns, Australia, shared at the MCR Campaign steering committee meeting in July 2020, “… what we need to do will become more challenging not only because of current circumstances but because the challenges have become harder and more complex. The findings from the Disaster Resilience Scorecard we ran a few years ago are starting to see results in terms of research and planning around major issues. I look forward to rerunning the Scorecard process and using the baseline measurement to build a future for us… and moving into a very uncertain future for the region due to the impacts of COVID.”


Liza Velle B. Ramos, Research and Planning Division Head, Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office of Makati City, the Philippines, shared with over 80 local government representatives at the 13th CITYNET Disaster Cluster Seminar on 25 November 2020 that Makati City has used the Public Health Addendum as a tool to revisit the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management on Health Plan and plan for COVID-19 recovery and discover the areas where the city is doing well and the gaps that need to be addressed, “… with these gaps, we were able to identify major activities that we need to do”. These include, for example, the need to revisit risk assessment and health scenario planning including plans for all sectors (education, economic, etc.), renovation/retrofitting of facilities for health hazard response, telemedicine and online consultation, and improvement, digitization of health data system and interoperability. Makati City continues to finalize the Disaster Risk Reduction Management on Health Plan and enhance the city’s COVID-19 recovery plan based on these findings.


The MCR Campaign and its tools have been well recognized by partners as the best place to start for cities. “This program [MCR] is not only beneficial to our current programme [Resilient Cities Network], but it has been hugely beneficial for the whole resilience agenda promoted and pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation. From the very beginning of the Rockefeller funded resilience programmes [100 Resilient Cities], MCR Campaign has been a reference point. Cities that were engaged in MCR Campaign and used the tools were in lessons and experiences, and could explain to other cities how resilience could be useful to their processes,” stated by Braulio Eduardo Morera, Resilient Cities Network (GRCN), at the MCR Campaign Steering Committee Meeting in July 2020.


The MCR Campaign has also helped guide national government to support local governments in strengthening disaster risk reduction capacities. H.E. U. Khürelsükh, Prime Minister of Mongolia, shared at the launch of MCR2030, "During my tenure as Deputy Prime Minister of Mongolia, all 22 major cities in Mongolia joined the “Making Cities Resilient” UN Global Campaign in 2017, and I inform you that the Government of Mongolia has fulfilled its commitment to implement Target (e) of the Sendai Framework by 2020, and all our major cities have adopted [and] are implementing local DRR strategies as of today...Through this Campaign, I believe that we have been able to build better community disaster resilience and recognize an importance of local leadership in DRR."





Learn more about the MCR Campaign tools - https://www.unisdr.org/campaign/resilientcities/toolkit


Description automatically generatedTen Essentials for Making Cities Resilient

The Ten Essentials for Making Cities Resilient provides an underlying framework for understanding disaster risk reduction at the local level. It includes ten fundamental areas a city should pursue to ensure disaster risk reduction is integrated in various development sectors and inclusive of citizen, private sector, and other non-governmental bodies. The Ten Essentials helps cities to look at disaster beyond emergency response and recovery to strengthen disaster risk governance, in line with the priorities of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030.




Description automatically generatedDisaster Resilience Scorecard for Cities


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Framed by the Ten Essentials for Making Cities Resilient, the Disaster Resilience Scorecard for Cities, a flagship tool of the MCR Campaign developed by IBM, AECOM, UNDRR and MCR Campaign partners with support from the European Commission and USAID, has also been widely used by local governments around the world to assess resilience progress and inform the development of local DRR strategies. Over 870 cities around the world have reported using the Scorecard. By the end of 2020, the Scorecard had been translated into 16 languages (Arabic, Bengali, Burmese, Chinese, English, French, Italian, Korean, Mongolian, Polish, Portuguese (PT), Portuguese (BR), Romanian, Russian, Spanish, and Turkish), all of which were at the demand of cities and member states. The translations were achieved with support from national governments and partners.




Description automatically generatedDisaster Resilience Scorecard for Cities – Public Health System Resilience Addendum


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Recognizing the potential oversight of inadequate address of public health related hazards in disaster risk reduction planning, a Public Health System Resilience Addendum of the Disaster Resilience Scorecard for Cities (Public Health Addendum) was developed and published in 2018 by MCR Campaign partners.  This tool attracted a great interest and became a timely instrument at the time of COVID-19 supporting local governments in strengthening public health risk reduction in local DRR planning and implementation process.  Within 2020, the Public Health Addendum has swiftly been translated into 10 languages with development of accompanying excel tool for utilization and analysis in 8 languages. 





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Moving towards the Decade of Action with MCR2030


MCR2030 responds to the growing understanding of urban risk: how it has changed and is changing, and the impacts this will have on cities and citizens. It recognises the increasing need for a systemic, joined-up approach to risk reduction, that allows city leaders to plan for risk-informed development, and citizens to benefit. MCR2030 builds on lessons learned during the previous MCR Campaign implementation from 2010-2020.


Learn more about MCR2030 at https://mcr2030.undrr.org/


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The Latest News From Tribal Emergency Management Association


The Latest News From Tribal Emergency Management Association

"FEMA - 2020 National Preparedness Report Available"

Posted on 12/24/2020


Today, FEMA released the 2020 National Preparedness Report, which only deals with actions taken in 2019. In its ninth year, this report presents an updated, risk-focused approach to summarizing the state of national preparedness.

Read More:






Copyright © 2020 Tribal Emergency Management Association, All rights reserved.

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Our Communities Criteria. Business as Usual, or WHO HAS SERVED OUR COMMUNITIES. One of these 5 officials could be Biden's FEMA chief

Will we be back at ‘business as usual’ in practices and policies for communities of color?

Which candidate has done more in fully practicing the 'WHOLE COMMUNITY' concept, and equitable inclusion for all communities in their jurisdiction currently or when they served in an emergency management leadership role for a City, County, or State?

It is not a matter of understanding and being a certified professional in emergency management, it is a matter of consistently ensuring that all communities, and vulnerable communities that are known even under the current COVID-19 crisis by ZIP CODE are served.

Our endorsement from the Black Emergency Management Association International (BEMA)will be based on a stringent criteria for our vulnerable communities, and ensuring that a candidate practices equitable inclusion of those communities, the whole community.  That innovative approaches are implement to provide that service.

Gatekeepers even exist within our own community.

It is not a matter of checking a box to keep a voter block quiet, or even the coloreds quiet.

    • The House Committee on Homeland Security will be the same.
    • Will FEMA Administration or Administrator be the same, but a different name in the next four years?
    • Is BEMA International at, or even invited to the table?
    • From the Gullah entire community along the East Coast, small family farmers, Compton to Inglewood, Liberty, the Bronx, Puerto Rico, and others.  Have those vulnerable communities been served?

Charles D. Sharp .  Chairman\CEO.  Cornell University Climate Fellow. BEMA International



One of these 5 officials could be Biden's FEMA chief

Thomas Frank, E&E News reporter

Published: Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Jared Moskowitz is among a handful of people seeking to lead the Federal Emergency Management Agency under President-elect Joe Biden. Monroe County BOCC/Flickr

The names of five prominent emergency management officials are circulating as possible candidates to run the Federal Emergency Management Agency in the incoming Biden administration, which is facing pressure to fill the slot quickly.

Sources close to FEMA tell E&E News that the five officials include Deanne Criswell, commissioner of the New York City Emergency Management Department, and James Featherstone, a longtime emergency management leader in Los Angeles. Criswell, who has held senior positions at FEMA, would be the first woman to lead the agency since its creation in 1979. Featherstone would be the first Black FEMA administrator since the late 1980s.

The Biden administration has vowed to create a diverse Cabinet, and FEMA is under pressure to address diversity issues following a recent internal report that found widespread racial and sexual harassment and discrimination in the agency.

The other potential candidates are Mark Ghilarducci, director of the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services; Jared Moskowitz, director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management; and Michael Sprayberry, executive director of the North Carolina Division of Emergency Management.

Ghilarducci worked closely this year with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, a Democratic senator from California, on the state's record-setting wildfires and has been outspoken in linking the wildfires to climate change.

"All of them are qualified, and they all have the experience necessary to do the job," a former senior FEMA official said.

The International Association of Emergency Managers, which represents local emergency agencies, has urged the Biden administration to fill the job quickly instead of waiting months after inauguration as previous incoming administrations have done. FEMA's current administrator, Peter Gaynor, will leave office with the Trump administration.

"Changing administrators in the middle of the greatest catastrophe to hit our country at least since World War II is a daunting thought," association President Judson Freed said in an interview. "The sooner we can know who we're going to be working with so we're not waiting until late spring or summer, the better."

Moskowitz has acknowledged his interest in the FEMA job, telling a Florida news outlet in November that "if the call came, I would answer the phone."

Sprayberry told E&E News in a statement that he is focusing on North Carolina's pandemic response and added, "I will say it would be an honor to be considered for a position within the Biden administration."

Criswell said in a statement that she is "committed to leading the NYC Emergency Management Department during these unprecedented times" and is "focused on serving the people of New York City."

Ghilarducci's office did not respond to a request for comment, and Featherstone could not be reached.

Here is a look at the possible candidates.

Deanne Criswell

Criswell was named head of New York City's Emergency Management Department in June 2019 by Mayor Bill de Blasio, a Democrat, who hired her from the Cadmus Group consulting firm.

Criswell worked at FEMA from 2011 to 2017 and led one of the agency teams that handle disaster response and recovery. Before joining FEMA, she was emergency manager in Aurora, Colo., a city of nearly 400,000 people near Denver.

In New York City, Criswell has warned about climate change triggering flooding in the city.

"Sea rise is definitely a concern, and sea levels in New York City right now have risen about a foot since 1900," Criswell told the "Disaster Zone" podcast in October. "Our current climate change projections show they could rise another 30 inches by 2050. This is a big concern for us."

"What we're seeing is high sea levels are causing flooding on what you would consider a sunny day," Criswell told podcast host Eric Holdeman.

In November 2019, Criswell told a security conference that "climate change, social and economic inequity, aging infrastructure, reliance on technology, cyber threats and domestic terrorism" are exacerbating disasters, according to the Brooklyn Daily Eagle.

"She would check a lot of the boxes. She's been a local emergency manager, worked for FEMA, been on the front lines of COVID activity, is well-respected by her peers. And she's a woman," a former FEMA senior official said.

James Featherstone

Featherstone spent 30 years working in public safety in Los Angeles, starting in the city's fire department in 1986 and working his way up to become general manager of the city's Emergency Management Department. Retiring in 2016, he became CEO of the Los Angeles Homeland Security Advisory Council, where he worked with the public and private sectors to modernize emergency preparedness, until August.

As interim fire chief in Los Angeles in 2013-14, Featherstone ran an agency that had faced allegations of discrimination against minorities and had paid millions of dollars to settle discrimination lawsuits.

"I'm certainly sensitive to diversity," Featherstone said in a 2014 interview with the Los Angeles Times. "Have I experienced discrimination? Absolutely."

Featherstone recently was chairman of a National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine committee that published a report in January on strengthening supply chains to withstand major disasters. The committee's report, written for FEMA, found that an influx of emergency supplies after a major disaster can have the unintended consequence of delaying an area's recovery and should be scaled back.

"The most effective way to deliver the needed supplies to a disaster-impacted area is by re-establishing pre-disaster supply chains," according to the report, which FEMA requested after experiencing supply problems during the devastating 2017 hurricane season.

Featherstone has served as a senior fellow at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government and was an adjunct instructor at Texas A&M's National Emergency Response and Recovery Training Center.

Mark Ghilarducci

Ghilarducci has been a senior official in California emergency management since 2000 and previously was a federal coordinating officer at FEMA in the Clinton administration.

In recent years, as California has faced some of the largest and most destructive wildfires in state history, Ghilarducci has been outspoken about climate change and a frequent witness at hearings in Congress.

In June 2019, Ghilarducci told the House Oversight and Reform Committee, "California has been severely impacted by the effects of climate change, which have manifested in the form of tree mortality, floods, severe storms, debris flows and multiple major wildfires."

Wildfire season is growing longer and fires are intensifying, Ghilarducci testified, because of "warmer temperatures, variable snowpack and earlier snowmelt caused by climate change."

In an August 2019 hearing before the same committee, Ghilarducci called climate change "a force multiplier when it comes to wildfires and their destruction" and said the wildfire burn area in California would increase 77% by 2100.

Ghilarducci had "frequent discussions" with Vice President-elect Harris in recent months about how to protect California residents from wildfires and COVID-19, according to a statement from Harris' Senate office in September.

At the August 2019 hearing, Ghilarducci questioned a new FEMA policy that made it harder for disaster survivors in large states such as California to get emergency aid from FEMA.

Jared Moskowitz

Moskowitz has the least experience in emergency management of the five possible FEMA candidates. He's been in charge of Florida's Division of Emergency Management since January 2019, when newly elected Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis named him to the position.

The appointment got attention in Florida because DeSantis is a Republican and Moskowitz is a Democrat who at the time of his appointment represented Broward County in the Florida House of Representatives, a part-time job. He worked on Barack Obama's presidential campaign in 2008. Moskowitz's full-time job was general counsel at AshBritt Environmental, a Florida company with contracts to clean up hurricane debris.

When he appointed Moskowitz, DeSantis called him a "high octane incumbent" and "an effective Democratic voice in the Republican-dominated Legislature," according to the South Florida Sun Sentinel.

"We have a rich history of Democrats and Republicans coming together in emergency management," Moskowitz told the Sun Sentinel in June. "When a hurricane hits, it doesn't pick a Republican house or a Democratic house. This pandemic doesn't pick whether you watch Fox or MSNBC in how it affects you."

Moskowitz was aggressive in the spring at lining up hotels to accommodate hurricane evacuees so they would not have to stay in traditional "congregate" shelters, where the coronavirus might be easily spread.

One emergency management senior official told E&E News that Moskowitz's candidacy for the FEMA job could be hurt by his association with DeSantis, a strong Trump supporter who was aggressive about keeping Florida schools and businesses open during the pandemic.

Michael Sprayberry

Sprayberry has run the North Carolina Division of Emergency Management since 2013, when he was appointed by then-Gov. Pat McCrory, a Republican, after working in the state agency for eight years. Sprayberry has continued to serve under North Carolina's incumbent governor, Democrat Roy Cooper.

Sprayberry is well-regarded by other emergency mangers for his experience and calm demeanor during disasters.

"He is a top-notch emergency manager. He never overreacts to bad news and ... takes ownership of the job that he's been appointed to do," former FEMA Administrator Brock Long told The Charlotte Observer in May. "I've always found Mike Sprayberry to be a humble diplomat by nature."

The Raleigh News & Observer wrote in May that Sprayberry "fits a familiar trope, the uncle who knows where the good barbecue is on the way to the beach — and has very strong opinions about it — but also the one who answers the phone immediately and shows up first to help when your car gets stuck in the mud."

"He's nonpolitical and doesn't really give a damn whether Republicans or Democrats are in power," Mark Goodman, a local emergency manager, told the Raleigh newspaper. "He does what is best for the people of North Carolina. That's the key. It's hard to find people like that."

Sprayberry is a member of FEMA's National Advisory Council and was president of the National Emergency Management Association in 2017-18.

Sprayberry last year voiced opposition to FEMA's plans, which were then under consideration, to slash disaster aid and make it harder to states to qualify for disaster aid. FEMA formally proposed the idea on Monday.

"I wouldn't support it because what that does is put the onus back on the states" for disaster recovery, Sprayberry told E&E News in October 2019.


Charles D. Sharp
Cornell University Climate Fellow
Black Emergency Managers Association International


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“We are now faced with the fact that tomorrow is today.  We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now.  In this unfolding conundrum of life and history there is such a thing as being too late.  Procrastination is still the thief of time.  Life often leaves us standing bare, naked and dejected with a lost opportunity.  This may well be mankind’s last chance to choose between chaos or community.”

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., ‘Where Are We Going From Here:  Chaos or Community’.



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