Emergency Management officials form partnerships with community organizations

The Jackson County EOC is the hub for emergency officials during a disaster.
The Jackson County EOC is the hub for emergency officials during a disaster.(WJHG/WECP)
Published: Jun. 23, 2022 at 6:25 PM CDT
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JACKSON COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - When there is a natural disaster, like a hurricane or large fire, the people on the front lines are responsible for keeping the community safe.

“I mean during the response phase, Emergency Management and the EOC, Emergency Operations Center, is a central hub for decision-makers and heads of leadership of all different agencies,” Keith Maddox with Emergency Management said.

That’s why Emergency Management and Jackson County officials have agreements with other organizations.

“Without those community partnerships, we are a very small team, so it is critical to have that to be able to operate efficiently and be able to provide services to the community,” County Administrator Wilanne Daniels said.

Some of these agreements are with places like Jackson Hospital and the Chipola Amateur Radio Club.

“Others are with faith-based groups to assist with feeding, helping with the EOC, and even the public, during a disaster,” Maddox said.

There was one event that made partnerships like this more relevant. Even though these agreements have been in place for years, officials say Hurricane Michael brought some specific needs to the forefront of everyone’s minds.

“The community, the commissioners, myself, we all understand first hand the importance of it after going through something at the level of Hurricane Michael,” Daniels said.

“I think it opened everybody’s eyes to the importance of them and it increased the spectrum of agreements we thought we may enter into,” Maddox said.

Officials say all the partnerships and preparations are to keep Jackson County safe during any type of emergency. These partnerships can be used in any type of emergency including, but not limited to storms, hurricanes, and fires.

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