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– Overview – Public information, media, risk communicationCommunication is a huge issue in emergency management. Done right, emergency managers serve the public well. Done wrong – big problems. Most organizations have a Public Information Officer who has undergone extensive training. Some organizations haven’t yet learned their lesson. – Reading AssignmentsAttached Files: 610- Crisis and Emergency Risk Communication Card (CERC).pdf (1.04 MB)Ciottone chapters 24, 42, 45A useful pocket card – (See attachment)http://emergency.cdc.gov/cerc/resources/pdf/basic_cerc_zcard.pdfFOCUS POINTSYou may find these sites interesting, but this is not required reading. The lesson in each of these is that the right PIO makes all the difference. The wrong one is a major problem. (My personal thanks to DMM student Christina Pareja for finding these).Gluckman, W. A., Weinstein, E. S., Dilling, S., & Paul, J. S. (2015). Public information management. In Ciottone’s Disaster Medicine (pp. 143–148). http://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-323-28665-7.00024-8http://www.wmsym.org/archives/2008/pdfs/8313.pdfhttp://www.powermag.com/the-communications-failures-lessons-of-three-mile-island/http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1001737#t=article- Discussion Board QuestionDescribe the role of the Public Information Officer in media relations and reporting during an incident. Why is this role so crucial? How can the PIO beneficially utilize the media for Risk Communication activities during the event? What pre-event activities lead to success in these relationships?- APA Style- Two references at least
_crisis_and_emergency_risk_communication_card__cerc_.pdf

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CRISIS AND EMERGENCY RISK COMMUNICATION (CERC):
Emergency Message Components
1. Expression of empathy
2. Call for Action
Who
What
Where
When
Why
How
3. What we don’t know
4. Process to get answers
5. Statement of commitment
6. Referrals
For more information
Next scheduled update
Crisis and emergency risk communication encompasses the urgency of disaster communication with the need to communicate risks and benefits to
stakeholders and the public. CERC differs from risk communication in that a decision must be made within a narrow time constraint, the decision may be
irreversible, the outcome of the decision may be uncertain, and the decision may need to be made with imperfect or incomplete information.
CREATING YOUR CERC MESSAGES
Be prepared
Foster alliances
Develop consensus
recommendations
Test messages
Acknowledge the
event with empathy
Explain and inform
the public in
simplest forms about
the risk
Establish agency
spokesperson
credibility
Provide emergency
courses of action
(including how/
where to get more
information
Commit to stakeholders and
public to continue
communication
Check your message
Positive action steps
Honest/open tone
Apply CERC principles
Clarity
Use of simple, short words
Avoid jargon/humor
Avoid judgmental phrases
Avoid extreme speculation
Help public
accurately
understand risks
Provide background/
information to those
who need it
Gain understanding
and support for
response and
recovery plans
Listen to stakeholder
and audience
feedback; correct
any misinformation
Explain emergency
recommendations
Empower risk/
benefit decisionmaking
Improve public
response in future;
similar events
through education
Examine problems
and mishaps;
reinforce what
worked
Encourage the
public to support
resource allocation
and public policy
Promote the
activities and
capabilities of the
agency (reinforce
corporate identity
externally and
internally)
CERC NINE-STEP PLAN
1. Verify situation.
2. Conduct notification.
3. Activate crisis plan.
4. Organize assignments.
5. Prepare information, obtain approvals.
6. Release information via pre-arranged channels.
7. Obtain feedback, conduct crisis evaluation.
8. Begin additional public education activities.
9. Monitor events.
CRISIS AND EMERGENCY RISK COMMUNICATION
Evaluate
communication plan
performance
Present a short, concise, and focused message (6thgrade level). It’s difficult in a heightened state of anxiety
or fear to take in copious amounts of information. Get
the bottom line out first.
Document lessons
learned
Cut to the chase. Relevant information only at this time.
Don’t begin with a lot of background information.
Determine specific
actions to improve
crisis systems or the
crisis plan
Give action steps in positives. Avoid the use of negatives.
Repeat the message. Repetition reflects credibility and
durability.
Create action steps in threes or rhyme, or create
an acronym. Three is not a magic number, but in an
emergency, you should not expect your audience to
absorb more than three simple directions.
Use personal pronouns for the organization. “We are
committed to . . .” or “We understand the need for . . .”
Accuracy of
Information
Speed of
Release
Empathy
+
Openness
Credibility
=
+
Trust
Successful
Communication
www.cdc.gov
CS111855
The First 48 Hours
BE FIRST. BE RIGHT. BE CREDIBLE.
Notification
Use your crisis plan’s notification list to ensure that your leadership
is aware (especially if it comes from the media and not the EOC) of
the emergency and that they know you are involved. Give leadership
your first assessment of the emergency from a communication
perspective and inform them of your next steps.
Coordination
Contact local, state, federal partners now. If there is potential for
criminal investigation, contact your FBI counterpart now. Secure a
spokesperson as designated in the plan. Initiate alert notification
and call-in extra communication staff, per the plan. Connect with the
EOC— make your presence known.
Media
Provide a statement indicating that your agency is aware of the
emergency and is involved in the response. Begin monitoring media
for misinformation that must be corrected. Tell the media when and
where to get updates from your agency. Give facts. Don’t speculate.
Ensure partners are saying the same thing.
The Public
Prepare your public information toll-free number operation now if
you anticipate that the public will seek reassurance or information
directly from your organization. (You may adjust hours of operation
and number of call managers as needed.) Use your initial media
statement as your first message to the public. Remind people that a
process is in place to mitigate the crisis. Begin public call monitoring
to detect trends or rumors.
Partners/Stakeholders
Send a statement to partners and stakeholders using prearranged
notification systems (preferably e-mail listservs). Engage your
leadership to make important initial phone calls, based on your plan,
to partners and key stakeholders. Use e-mail to notify employees that
their agency is involved in the response and that updates will follow.
Ask for their support.
Resources
Conduct the crisis risk assessment and implement assignments and
hours of operation accordingly. Secure your pre-planned place in the
EOC or adjoining area.
For More Information about CERC: CERC_info@cdc.gov
CRISIS EMERGENCY
RISKCOMMUNICATION
Quick Tips
Express empathy and caring.
Display honesty/openess.
Avoid jargon; use humor
cautiously.
Show commitment/dedication.
Refute negatives without
repeating them.
Know your organization’s
policies.
Use positive terms.
Tell the truth.
Don’t assume you’ve made
your point. Ask whether you’ve
made yourself clear.
Stay on message.
Acknowledge uncertainties.
Stay in your lane (scope of
responsibilities).
Give people things to do.
Don’t lead with messages
about money.
Avoid one-liners, cliches,
and off-the-cuff comments.
Discuss what you know, not
what you think.
Don’t over-reassure.
Ask more of people.
(share risk)
Failure to prepare is
preparing to fail.
— Unknown
Important Reminders About Your CERC Plan
Update the plan at regular intervals.
Longer is not better; your plan is a reference tool not
a step-by-step guide.
o
an i
an
i
.
RESOURCES
www.cdc.gov
www.bt.cdc.gov
www.hhs.gov
www.fema.gov
www.redcross.org
www.ndpo.gov
www.nphic.org
To request CERC training tools: CERC request@cdc.gov

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