March 21, 2016

Governor Cuomo Announces 100,000 New Yorkers Trained Through the Citizen Preparedness Corps

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Training teaches attendees how to prepare for, respond to and recover from a disaster or emergency

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Governor Cuomo today announced that more than 100,000 New Yorkers have taken the Citizen Preparedness Corps training since its inception in 2014. The program seeks to provide citizens with the tools and resources to prepare for emergencies and disasters, respond accordingly, and recover as quickly as possible to pre-disaster conditions. On behalf of Governor Cuomo, Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul will announce this milestone at the Citizens Preparedness training course at the Albany Times Union Center tonight at 6 p.m.

“Through the Citizen Preparedness Corps, we have provided New Yorkers with the critical assistance and resources necessary to properly respond whenever a disaster strikes,” Governor Cuomo said. “This program uses a proven approach that has helped prepare our citizens for this new normal, and we will continue working with our first response teams to build a stronger and safer New York.”

Launched in 2014, Citizen Preparedness training provides individuals with information to better respond to any type of natural or man-made disaster. The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services’ Office of Emergency Management and Office of Fire Prevention and Control, the New York National Guard, and the American Red Cross provide the training courses across the state every week. To date, instructors have conducted almost 2,000 courses across the state in several languages, including Spanish, Chinese, Russian, Haitian Creole, Burmese, Karan and Cantonese. Additionally, instructors have conducted customized courses to address specific needs for the elderly, the blind and the deaf.

Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul said, “Through the efforts of DHSES, the National Guard and the American Red Cross, New York State has led the way in becoming the most prepared state in the country. There are now tens of thousands of New Yorkers who are better prepared for a disaster, thanks to the hard work of the men and woman who provide this training.”

NYS Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner John P. Melville said, “DHSES and its agencies are proud lead the efforts to build the Citizen Preparedness Corps program and, along with the New York National Guard, we will continue to support its goal, which is to prepare all New Yorkers for any type of disaster or emergency.”

Major General Anthony German, Commander of the New York Air National Guard, said, "Helping our fellow citizens prepare to cope with disasters has been a rewarding mission for the Soldiers and Airmen of the New York National Guard. Our men and women have responded to major hurricanes, flooding and snowstorms in the past decade so they know the importance of being ready for an emergency situation."

Gary Striar, Chief Executive Officer of the American Red Cross Eastern New York Region, said, "The Red Cross is very proud to be part of the effort to bring free Citizen Preparedness Corps training to thousands of people across New York State. In light of the major disasters we’ve witnessed right here in our region over the years, we are deeply committed to supporting this program and doing all we can to prepare the communities we serve."

Albany County Executive Daniel P. McCoy said, “This is an exciting day as New York State announces that it has hit a milestone in citizen emergency preparedness training with 100,000 residents who have completed the program and are now more prepared in the event of an emergency or disaster. I am pleased that Albany County has played an important role in reaching that goal by holding two trainings over the last several months culminating in this celebration at the Times Union Center.”

State Senator Neil Breslin said, “These preparedness events are designed to assist our residents and provide them the tools they need in an event of an emergency. The key to responding to any natural or man-made disaster is preparedness and this two-hour session will assist with this preparation including the distribution of a free NYS Disaster Preparedness Kit for all attendees.“

Assemblymember Patricia Fahy said, “These programs help New Yorkers prepare for and live through a disaster, while better equipping citizens to respond to and recover from what can be devastating weather events. I applaud the Governor’s leadership on this important issue and look forward to continued partnerships with local and state representatives to ensure the best possible outcome in the event of a disaster.”

Assemblymember John T. McDonald said, “The Citizens Preparedness Corps continues to be an invaluable resource to residents throughout New York State. I have been honored to participate in many of these events and these events prepare New York Residents for the inevitable as our environment continues to change. I appreciate the persistence Governor Cuomo and our state agencies have shown in not only instilling these programs at no cost to residents but to continue to share the message. As is the norm, proactive is not noticed at times but a disaster preparedness is the ultimate proactive tool we can use to protect our families and our communities.

Mayor Kathy Sheehan said, “The Citizen Preparedness Corps training brings together our federal, state, and local partners in collaboration to empower our citizens to know how to respond to an emergency situation. I thank Governor Cuomo and the state agencies for coordinating this effort.”

Citizens Preparedness training courses are also available online to individuals who cannot attend a training course in person. Online course are available at http://prepare.ny.gov/online-citizen-preparedness-training.

Upcoming Citizens Preparedness Courses: http://prepare.ny.gov/

About DHSES
The Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) and its four offices -- Counter Terrorism, Emergency Management, Fire Prevention and Control, and Interoperable and Emergency Communications -- provide leadership, coordination and support for efforts to prevent, protect against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from terrorism and other man-made and natural disasters, threats, fires and other emergencies. For more information, visit the DHSES Facebook page, follow @NYSDHSES on Twitter, or visit dhses.ny.gov.

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