FEMA Bulletin Week of April 5, 2021

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Week of April 5, 2021

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In this Edition:

Important Dates & Reminders

April 15

FEMA Corps member application period closes.

FEMA Celebrates 70 Years of the Emergency Management Institute


FEMA’s Emergency Management Institute marks its 70 anniversary this April. The institute proudly commemorates its long and distinguished history supporting the Nation’s emergency management community.


The Emergency Management Institute began in April 1951 as the Civil Defense Staff College. The Civil Defense Staff College taught civil defense courses in heavy rescue, program administration and finance, radiation monitoring and control. The early years are highlighted in training films produced by the college’s "School for Survival." The films depicted trainees fighting incendiary bombs in enclosed spaces, working through poison gas attacks in a sealed chamber and tunneling through crumbled brick walls. They help illustrate how much emergency management has evolved over the years.


Today, the institute focuses on providing state, local, territorial and tribal emergency managers with professional leadership and crisis management training designed to address a wide range of threats and hazards. On an annual basis, the institute offers several hundred instructor-led, virtual and online independent study offerings, training millions of students annually.


To celebrate its 70 years, the Emergency Management Institute will have a year-long celebration to include webinars, podcasts, panel discussions, videos and featured speakers providing compelling insights from those who have benefitted over the years from the institute and its predecessor institutions in Olney, Maryland and Battle Creek, Michigan.


If you would like to share how the Emergency Management Institute has impacted you and your community, submit your story to the institute at FEMA-EMI-Social-Media@fema.dhs.gov.  

EMI Campus

FEMA Opens Application Period for Emergency Management Programs


FEMA's Emergency Management Institute announces the application period for the National Emergency Management Advanced Academy, the National Emergency Management Executive Academy and the Master Public Information Officer Program beginning April 1 through June 1.


The application packets are available for download below:


Applicants will be notified in late summer of selection status.

FEMA Updates Pricing Methodology, Provides Guidance to Insurance Partners


FEMA is updating the National Flood Insurance Program’s risk rating methodology through the implementation of a new pricing methodology called Risk Rating 2.0. The methodology leverages industry best practices and cutting-edge technology to enable FEMA to deliver rates that are equitable, easier to understand and better reflect a property’s flood risk.


FEMA is conscious of the far-reaching economic impacts COVID-19 has had on the nation and existing policyholders and is taking a phased approach to rolling out the new rates.


Phase I: New policies beginning Oct. 1, 2021 will be subject to the new rating methodology. Also beginning Oct. 1, existing policyholders eligible for renewal will be able to take advantage of immediate decreases in their premiums.


Phase II: All remaining policies renewing on or after April 1, 2022 will be subject to the new rating methodology.


FEMA is working with Congress, its insurance industry partners and state, local, tribal and territorial agencies to ensure clear understanding of these changes. Policyholders will receive communication to understand how their policy may change.


For the latest information on Risk Rating 2.0, visit fema.gov.

FEMA Co-Hosts a Webinar on Mitigation



The Natural Hazards Center and FEMA will host a Making Mitigation Work webinar, “Implementing Mitigation Near and Far: U.S., New Zealand and Applied Research,” from 1 – 2 p.m. ET on April 13.


This webinar will examine the capacity and processes that communities use to implement mitigation strategies from two perspectives. These are state hazard mitigation officers in the United States and local officials in New Zealand.


North Carolina State University Professor Gavin Smith will use the survey of state hazard mitigation officers results to provide insight on how to build the capacity needed to effectively implement FEMA Hazard Mitigation Assistance grants.  The webinar will also compare housing buyout programs in the U.S. and New Zealand.


To attend the webinar, register on Zoom.

Department of Homeland Security Hosts a Webinar on Preventing Online Child Exploitation



April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. To commemorate the month, the Department of Homeland Security, Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships and the Homeland Security Investigations, Cyber Crimes Center, Child Exploitation Investigation Unit will host a webinar from 2 – 3 p.m. ET on April 15.


The webinar will assist faith and community groups and caregivers of youth and teens on how they can help children to be safer online. The webinar will also address support for families when their children have been victimized by online sexual exploitation.   


The department has brought together four of the leading organizations in this fight that will share insights on how to:

  • Prevent child exploitation online.
  • Identify what child sexual abuse material (CSAM) looks like in communities.
  • Share tips on how to support children and their families if they become victims of this crime.
  • Find resources to educate children on how to be safer online and to support families dealing with the aftermath of this crime.


Presentations will include:

  • An overview of the latest research on technology and youth’s online risk-taking behaviors, including sexting, sextortion and online grooming.
  • Approaches to prevent and reduce online harms of youth.
  • An overview from a Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent on child sexual exploitation investigations. 
  • Strategies to support families when their child has been sexually exploited.
  • Resources from the Department of Homeland Security, National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and Thorn, a charity dedicated to the online defense of children.


To join the webinar:

  • Register for the event using the Adobe Connect registration.
  • Test your Adobe Connect prior to the meeting; you may need time to update or install software to access the audio-visual content.
  • This webinar will offer captioning on the webinar platform.


For more information, send an email to iGuardian@ice.dhs.gov. A recording of the webinar will be sent by email to all registered participants in case they are unable to attend or wish to share.

FEMA Encourages Participation in the National Weather Service, #SafePlaceSelfie Campaign


#SafePlaceSelfie day is April 7 and is a time to showcase preparedness efforts. Consider joining the National Weather Service in a social media readiness campaign using the hashtag, #SafePlaceSelfie.


To participate, on April 7 post a selfie of yourself in a safe place from the home or workplace secure from hazardous weather April 7. Creativity and humor are encouraged! Last year the campaign earned over 98 million impressions. Challenge a friend or colleague to take part in the challenge. 


This campaign captures preparedness in action and by making it fun, can motivate people to take another step forward in their overall state of preparedness. Individuals and organizations can participate and tailor tweets or post to local weather hazards. Safety tips for specific weather hazards are available at weather.gov. When posting, link to weather.gov to share safety tips and use #SafePlaceSelfie and/or tag @NWS to keep the topic trending. 


Go to weather.gov for more information, FAQs or to download the #SafePlaceSelfie image. For additional preparedness tips and information, go to ready.gov.


FEMA Releases Updates to Resilience Analysis and Planning Tool


FEMA updated the "Resilience Analysis and Planning Tool." The updates include Census tract demographic data, estimated annualized frequency of 15 hazards by county and new data layers on National Flood Insurance Program policy penetration rates.


This update also includes new symbology legends, revised navigation tabs and data display tools that simplify the analysis of community resilience indicators.


The tool is a geographic information system web-map tool. It allows users to combine layers of community resilience indicators, infrastructure locations and hazard data to visualize, prioritize and implement strategies for planning in community outreach, resilience, response and recovery.


This update includes the latest Census data from the American Community Survey five-year data from 2015-2019, including tribal census data and a new data layer on broadband internet access data. In addition, FEMA added data on National Flood Insurance Program penetration rates for residential buildings in special flood hazard areas.


The resilience tool now includes county-level estimates of how often hazards are likely to occur per year for 15 natural hazards, which are drawn from FEMA’s National Risk Index analysis. Through FEMA’s collaboration with the National Weather Service, the planning tool maintains real-time weather, watches and warnings data. The tool also includes historic hazard data on tornadoes and hurricanes, which is drawn from the Homeland Infrastructure Foundation-Level Data Open datasets.


The "Resilience Analysis and Planning Tool" is available at FEMA.gov. This website also includes supporting documents on the tool, including a user guide, a summary list of resilience analysis and planning data layers and sources, a summary of community resilience indicators research and video how-to guides to demonstrate functions and tools.


FEMA will host two 60-minute webinars on April 13 and 15 to provide additional background on the Resilience Analysis and Planning Tool updates, demonstrate multiple capabilities and answer questions from users. Webinars are open to the public and real-time captioning will be available.




For questions and feedback, email FEMA-TArequest@fema.dhs.gov.

FEMA Announces $510 Million Appropriated to the Emergency Food and Shelter Program


Congress appropriated $510 million to the Emergency Food and Shelter Program, $400 million for humanitarian relief and $110 million for agencies that assist migrants encountered by the Department of Homeland Security. The Emergency Food and Shelter Program is a federally funded program administrated by FEMA that supports the work of local social service organizations to provide shelter, food and supportive services to our nation’s hungry and homeless.


The program’s national board expects to open the application period for the $110 million to organizations that provided or will provide services to individuals and families at the southern border in mid-April. Agencies that provide shelter, food, transportation, basic health and first aid, COVID-19 testing, associated medical care needed during quarantine and isolation and other supportive services may apply.


Additional information can be found on FEMA.gov.

FEMA, DHS and Other Federal Agencies Fighting COVID-19


In February, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas activated the DHS Surge Capacity Force to support President Biden’s goal of vaccinating 200 million individuals within his first 100 days in office. On April 1, Secretary Mayorkas expanded the ranks of the Surge Capacity Force by activating Tier 4, which allows employees of other federal agencies outside of DHS to join FEMA in this vital mission.


Our nation has experienced unprecedented hardship brought on by COVID-19. More than 500,000 people in the United States alone have lost their lives due to this disease. FEMA is encouraging federal employees who can volunteer to join the Surge Capacity Force. Your help will be vital as we battle COVID-19, through a robust national vaccination campaign.


For more information regarding the DHS Surge Capacity Force, visit dhs.gov.


Watch this video to see the Surge Capacity Force in action.

Upcoming Deadlines and Reminders

National Hurricane Program to Host Online Training


To prepare for the 2021 hurricane season, the National Hurricane Program is offering a three-day online training. The training will cover hurricane hazards, hurricane forecast products, forecast uncertainty and informed decision-making. Classes are available to anyone who has, or can obtain, a HURREVAC account. 


The webinar series will be from:

  • 1 to 4 p.m. ET on May 4 - 6.


Register in advance for the webinar and provide your occupational details.  


The National Hurricane Program provides data, resources and technical assistance for hurricane evacuation planning and response for state, local, tribal, territorial and federal government partners. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Hurricane Center, FEMA and the US Army Corps of Engineers, the three program partners, will provide instruction for this webinar series.


Sign-Up to Make a Difference With FEMA


The FEMA and AmeriCorps partnership program, FEMA Corps, is seeking talented and enthusiastic adults between 18 – 26 years old to serve the country before, during and after disasters.


FEMA Corps is a volunteer service program to give young adults the chance to be exposed to and work in the field of emergency management. Over the course of 12 months, FEMA Corps works to assist communities prepare for and respond to disasters. Members will travel across the country to assist in FEMA’s mission. Many FEMA Corps alumni go on to become professionals at FEMA and other levels of government.


Applications are now open for the summer class of FEMA Corps and will close April 15.


Go to AmeriCorps.gov or FEMA.gov to learn more. For questions, contact fema-corps-program@fema.dhs.gov.