- Hannah Kamath
Tips for Navigating a Community Emergency
In sharing this information we hope to prepare ourselves and neighbors for unpredictable situations that challenge community safety in the weeks and months ahead. We know ongoing tragedies continue to impact our community -- the murder of George Floyd and the impending trials, the global COVID-19 pandemic & economic depression, the national increase in violent crime. This information will not resolve any of these realities but aim to provide a few actionable ways we can encourage collective preparation and response.
Create a personal preparedness plan that considers the following:
A go-bag with hard copies of important documents (including your bank accounts, insurance, etc), masks, first aid & toiletries, a change of clothes, phone and chargers, flashlight, snacks and water, and other items that would be critical for 1-2 days away from your home.
Options you might have for shelter if you need to leave your home. This could be a hotel, a friend or family member’s house, or an emergency shelter.
List of people you may need to contact including friends, family, and neighbors - create communication plans and channels if necessary.
Use resources like www.ready.gov/plan to plan with your family.
Remember, you may not have access to your phone if it dies or breaks, so be sure to have everything in writing.
Get a COVID test so you can feel more confident if you need to stay with a friend or family member.
Encourage others to do the same. You can find free testing locations at www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/testsites/community
Consider working with your neighbors to plan together:
If you don’t already, start getting to know your neighbors. Don’t wait until a crisis or emergency situation.
Print out or draw a map of the neighborhood so you can easily navigate potential road closures or traffic issues.
Understand what your neighbors might need and how you might be able to best support each other in a crisis. For example, language barriers, accessibility, limited mobility, technology support, parole status that may require curfews or distance from guns, etc.
Have backup plans for if internet and/or phone service aren’t available or reliable
Understand that not everyone has equal access to the resources they may need to be prepared. Work together to share resources and brainstorm solutions.
Monitor or sign-up for public safety updates from local and state agencies
Look for emergency updates on the City of Minneapolis or State of Minnesota official websites
Follow any local or state-directed emergency measures, including curfews
Be sure to care for your mental health as best you can.
This could be pursuing traditional therapy, taking some time to meditate or journal, listening to a podcast, or creating an exercise or coping strategy. Our community is holding a lot of trauma, and it’s important to care for your wellbeing so you can be better prepared for a crisis.
PPNA knows these tips can’t meet every need or situation. We will continue to look for ways to share timely and relevant information depending on what the community is facing. -Sign-up to receive our email updates at www.ppna.org/sign-up or contact us at email@example.com