The worst case scenario: when the next terrorist attack or pandemic strikes, will your company have a plan--and be ready to execute it?Bird flu bird flu: see influenza.
or avian influenza
viral respiratory disease, mainly of birds including poultry and waterbirds but also transmissible to humans. is on Tom Toomey's mind. The Chief Executive Officer and President of United Dominion Realty Trust (UDRT UDRT United Dominion Realty Trust
UDRT Underspecified Discourse Representation Theory
UDRT Union Démocrate pour le Respect du Travail
UDRT Upper Dry Run Trunk
UDRT Unidades Demostrativas de Referenciales Tecnológicos ), the fourth-largest REIT REIT
See: Real Estate Investment Trust
See real estate investment trust (REIT). in the country, wants to be certain that his company has a plan--and knows how to execute it--before the next disaster strikes.
Bird flu, or avian flu avian flu: see influenza. , is already under the scrutiny of local governments and school districts nationwide and has created a media buzz internationally as more cases are detected across Europe.
According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. public health experts, bird flu has the potential to become the greatest public health crisis in recorded history Recorded history can be defined as history that has been written down or recorded by the use of language, whereas history is a more general term referring simply to information about the past. It starts in the 4th millennium BC, with the invention of writing. , threatening the lives of one of every eight people, and--if it crosses the Atlantic--some 40 million Americans.
And that isn't chicken feed.
Having lived through hurricanes and floods, Toomey said he's aware of how catastrophic events can alter people's perceptions of reality. He also has a unique perspective on the September 11 terrorist attacks on New York City New York City: see New York, city.
New York City
City (pop., 2000: 8,008,278), southeastern New York, at the mouth of the Hudson River. The largest city in the U.S. and Washington, D.C.
On that day, he left a meeting in New York City at 7 a.m., just two hours before the planes crashed into the Twin Towers in the city's financial district. He flew to Washington, D.C., in time for a 9 a.m. conference held across the street from the White House. Once there, he was told of the plane crash into the Pentagon.
His first reaction, he recalled, was to flee. His second was to try to understand the scope of the events and come to grips with the fact that the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. was under attack.
"I learned several things that day," Toomey said. "One was about human reaction in the face of extenuating circumstances Facts surrounding the commission of a crime that work to mitigate or lessen it.
Extenuating circumstances render a crime less evil or reprehensible. They do not lower the degree of an offense, although they might reduce the punishment imposed. . The other was the scope of an event of catastrophic proportion, impacting all social and economic fabric."
THE MOST UNDERUSED RESOURCE
Toomey said businesses must be prepared to overcome setbacks whether they are caused by natural disasters or terrorist attacks. "We face disasters every year and, in many respects, they have similarities," Toomey said. "The bottom line is business disruption: You need to plan for it by building a process so you react in a well-thought-out manner to difficult circumstances."
Today, he said, the talk is about bird flu. "It is how you manage before, during and after the occurrence that separates those companies that are successful and those that become victims," Toomey said.
Toomey has his own take on how UDRT must prepare for the next manmade or natural catastrophe, which he believes is inevitable. He defines preparation as a process that comprises risk assessment, preventive measures, emergency response, business continuity and employee and workplace initiatives--all preventive measures designed to minimize the effect on employees and residents and to diminish business disruption.
Toomey cited a December 2005 report from the Alfred P Sloan Foundation Sloan Foundation, fund established (1934) by automobile executive Alfred P. Sloan, Jr. as a philanthropic institution supporting research in various areas. In its early years it stressed support of U.S. economic education and research. (see sidebar, page 65), which examined the disaster and terrorism preparedness of eight leading U.S. corporations. The report provided insight into how those companies approached disaster preparedness and recommended how to brace for such circumstances by using plans developed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is the federal agency responsible for coordinating emergency planning, preparedness, risk reduction, response, and recovery. The agency works closely with state and local governments by funding emergency programs and providing technical (FEMA FEMA,
n.pr See Federal Emergency Management Agency. ) and the Red Cross.
"We have 270 individual communities and each has a different set of facts, so there's really no one template for disaster preparedness because there's no common scenario," Toomey said. "For example, in Florida, we don't work on earthquake preparedness Earthquake preparedness refers to a variety of measures designed to help individuals, businesses, and local and state governments in earthquake prone areas to prepare for significant earthquakes. , but we do work on hurricane preparedness. What you need is an established leader onsite who is familiar with all aspects of the community as well as the surrounding buildings and employers.
"Your emergency plan needs to be simple, not a 30-page document that you can't find when you need it, but three to four pages of essential information and instructions that is immediately accessible to help guide the onsite team on what to do and who should do it," Toomey said. "One common error is to store an emergency plan on a personal computer. What happens when there's a power loss or cell phones can't be used? Common sense is the most underused resource."
ASKING THE CRITICAL QUESTIONS
UDRT's Executive Vice President of Property Operations Martha Carlin car·line or car·lin
A woman, especially an old one.
[Middle English kerling, from Old Norse, from karl, man.] and Executive Vice President of Talent Management Sara Jo Light are preparing for a bird flu epidemic.
Toomey said they are working through scenarios, discussing a range of topics from corporate health policies to economic disruption estimates. They are posing critical questions: How will 2,100 employees and their families be inoculated? What if there's a vaccine shortage? How do we deliver preventive information? What policies for sick pay and time off need to be developed?
On a broader scale, Toomey said UDRT is developing scenarios of an entire geographic sector or community of UDRT employees being affected. First, replacement teams of employees would be needed to manage communities.
"At that point, we are even discussing having to fly employees in, the length of time they may be needed and how to cover the temporary personnel loss at another location," Toomey said. "It is inevitable that something will happen and we've got to be prepared with a plan."
IS THIS IN YOUR PLAN?
While no template or book has every answer about how to prepare for emergencies or terrorist attacks, experts at the March 2006 NAA NAA
Nomina Anatomica Avium. Capitol Conference Government Affairs Roundtable discussion offered the following advice.
Have a basic plan. Don't try to draft a separate strategy for every conceivable emergency situation.
Be aware of the surrounding area. Property managers should be observant and take note of what type of buildings are near the community and how they might affect the emergency plan. Also, apartment staff should open lines of communication "Lines of Communication" is an episode from the fourth season of the science-fiction television series Babylon 5. Synopsis
Franklin and Marcus attempt to persuade the Mars resistance to assist Sheridan in opposing President Clark. with neighbors regarding emergency preparedness
Wait on evacuation. If a crisis occurs, don't evacuate the property immediately. Wait for authorities to assess the situation and determine if residents should evacuate, and if so, where they should go. The worst thing to do is direct residents to an area that authorities have not yet declared safe.
Get to know your officials. Property managers should become acquainted with their district commanders at the police stations and their "beat" patrol officers. In times of crisis, a local policeman or law official will have the most valuable information about how to handle a crisis.
Consider the residents. In all circumstances, property managers should consider what residents would want or expect their property managers to tell them and act accordingly.
Screen residents with care. Make copying an applicant's ID part of the resident screening process. If a person applies for an apartment and his name shows up on the FBI Wanted List, don't panic or try to apprehend him. Instead, call the authorities immediately. The police can obtain a subpoena subpoena (səpē`nə) [Lat.,=under penalty], in law, an order to a witness to appear before a court. A subpoena ad testificandum [Lat. quickly to confirm if the person poses a threat.
Call the FBI about suspicious activity. The FBI realizes that apartment managers will know about suspicious resident activity before the FBI does. (The FBI performs dozens of "suspicious package" investigations every day.)
PARTICIPANTS NEEDED FOR SIMULATED TERRORISM RESPONSE EXERCISE
NAA invites its members to participate in the U.S. government's TOPOFF TOPOFF Top Officials (US national-level terrorism exercise) series of biannual bi·an·nu·al
1. Happening twice each year; semiannual.
2. Occurring every two years; biennial.
bi·an exercises to test its National Response Plan and other preparedness strategies. Participants in this "Command Post" exercise, or "CPX CPX Command Post Exercise
CPX Culebra Puerto Rico (airport code)
CPX Cleft Palate, X-Linked
CPX Corel Painter X
CPX Compare with X (6502 processor instruction)
CPX Command Post/Paper Exercise ," known as TOPOFF 4 CPX (T4 CPX) will practice addressing a fictional, simulated significant major terrorist event that takes place in the Washington, D.C., area.
Participation in the exercise is open to the private sector and "active play" will run from noon Wednesday, June 21, until noon Thursday, June 22. Participation is from your own office via the Internet and conference calls. You do not have to travel to the simulation.
This opportunity is offered because NAA is a member of the Real Estate Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ISAC ISAC Illinois Student Assistance Commission
ISAC Istituto di Scienze dell'Atmosfera e del Clima (Italy)
ISAC International Society for Analytical Cytology
ISAC Iowa State Association of Counties
ISAC Information Sharing Analysis Center )---a public/private partnership dedicated to anti-terrorism and preparedness. Please contact NAA's Vice President of Government Affairs Barbara Vassallo at email@example.com or call 703/518-6141 Ext. 106 for more information.
TERRORISM AWARENESS INFORMATION POSTED ON NAA WEB SITE
NAA is a member of the Real Estate Information Sharing Analysis Center (ISAC). ISAC provides detailed information about counter terrorism and emergency preparedness, as well as bird flu. This comprehensive information is available at www.naahq.org by clicking on the "Homeland Security" quick link near the bottom, left of the NAA home page.
UDRT's SIX-POINT PLAN
Following is UDRT's six-point disaster preparedness program, adapted from "Disaster and Terrorism Preparedness. An Examination of the State of Corporate Preparedness in the U.S. Among Eight Leading Corporations."
1. RISK ASSESSMENT
* Establish a process
* Determine the variety of threats
* Identify facilities
* Identify people
2. PREVENTIVE MEASURES
* First line of defense
3. EMERGENCY RESPONSE PLANNING
* Crisis command quarters
* Practice drills
* Bring in local EMTs and others
* Assemble emergency kits
* Personnel response plan
4. BUSINESS CONTINUITY PLANNING Business Continuity Planning (BCP) is an interdisciplinary peer mentoring methodology used to create and validate a practiced logistical plan for how an organization will recover and restore partially or completely interrupted critical function(s) within a predetermined
* Redundancy in communications, information technology, etc.
5. ORGANIZATIONAL MANAGEMENT
* Who is in charge and how can they be reached
* Alternative forms of communication if power is lost or cell phone service is disrupted
6. EMPLOYEES AND WORKPLACE
* Personnel disaster kits
* Work at home
* Planned transportation
ABOUT THE STUDY
"Disaster and Terrorism Preparedness. An Examination of the State of Corporate Preparedness in the U.S. Among Eight Leading Corporations" is a report prepared by The Bellwether Group Inc. for the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation is a philanthropic non-profit organization in the United States. It was established in 1934 by Alfred P. Sloan, Jr., then-President and Chief Executive Officer of General Motors. .
This pilot benchmarking project focused on a select group of Large corporations. Each corporation experienced business disruptions in the United States, arising from natural hazards and more than half from terrorism. (The full report can be found at www.bellwethersecurity.com.)
Best practices reported by participating companies included air protection, business continuity planning, communications (including a corporate crisis blog), drilling and training, employee protection, mailroom protection, perimeter security, risk assessment, surveillance and threat warning.
B. Kreisler, ImPrint LLC (Logical Link Control) See "LANs" under data link protocol.
LLC - Logical Link Control , is a marketing and public relations public relations, activities and policies used to create public interest in a person, idea, product, institution, or business establishment. By its nature, public relations is devoted to serving particular interests by presenting them to the public in the most consultant to the multifamily housing industry. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 703/366-2861.