Thursday, October 7, 2010

USCG’s Preparedness Campaign

Excerpt from U.S. Coast Guard “Proceedings of the Marine Safety & Security Council” magazine by LT Kristina Hynes and LT Kim Wheatley, U.S. Coast Guard Office of Incident Management and Preparedness.

Readiness vs. Preparedness
The Coast Guard motto “Semper Paratus”— or “Always Ready”—guides its missions and efforts. However, being “ready” is different from being “prepared.”

If individual air and boat crews and shore teams are ready, equipped, and deployed to execute their mission functions, they must also be fully prepared to respond—to combine individual unit and mission area functions into a smoothly operating and consistent whole to ensure a coherent federal response.

Achieving Preparedness
Configuring preparedness to align with both Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Coast Guard strategic preparedness goals is achieved through the preparedness planning cycle, which links missions to plans, capabilities, exercises, and evaluations.

As the Coast Guard modernizes and DHS refines the planning process and adopts the planning cycle, preparedness will become an increasingly integral component of mission execution.

The Campaign Plan

The Coast Guard is establishing a preparedness campaign plan to outline the preparedness program’s mission and vision, scope and impact, goals and objectives, elements and functions, challenges and initiatives, and its alignment and coordination with national preparedness.

Goals for the next five years include:
  • Proactively engage with stakeholders to sustain a cooperative unity of effort to protect, prevent, respond to, and recover from all threats and hazards.
  • Integrate Coast Guard contingency plans with appropriate departments, agencies, and jurisdictions.
  • Maintain required Coast Guard preparedness program capabilities, including staffing, training, and utilization.
  • Enhance preparedness through standard exercise delivery that validates plans, concepts, and capabilities; reinforces training; and provides a measure of readiness.
  • Produce lessons learned and best practices that incorporate all elements of Coast Guard preparedness and individual mission readiness.

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