Welcome to the Department of Emergency Management and Operational Continuity (DEMOC), a division of Risk Management. DEMOC provides structure to guide Georgetown University and its stakeholders in mitigating, preparing, responding to, and recovering from emergencies and disasters. DEMOC also develops the university's emergency management plan, which facilitates collaboration between these stakeholders.
Phases of Emergency Management
Emergency management is a profession that is linked to other professions. Emergency managers work with safety officials, fires fighters, EMS, and police. However, those are tangent to the field of Emergency Management. Emergency management is a much broader profession that operates in four phases: mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery. Most of the time, DEMOC operates between mitigation and preparedness coordinating resources and faciliatating communication between stakeholders.
Mitigation involves reducing the risk of potential emergencies and disasters. In collaboration with Safety and Environmental Management (SEM), Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S), Facilities Management, and DC Fire and EMS (DC FEMS), DEMOC works to ensure that the risk of emergencies and disasters is reduced. This phase involves everything from safety inspections and hazard reporting to requesting and assessing repairs.
Preparedness involves training, education, and planning. Lessons learned from past events demonstrate that people cannot solely depend on response agencies during an emergency or disaster. They need to be personally prepared to survive (e.g. having a survival kit and learning emergency response procedures). This is why programs like CERT and The Marshal Program here at Georgetown are integral parts of the university’s preparedness. Preparedness also includes functional exercises with partner agencies like the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) and Georgetown University Police Department (GUPD). Functional exercises are designed to improve the coordination and proficiency that will be needed during an actual emergency response.
Following an emergency or disaster, DEMOC would move into the response phase, which involves the identification and coordination of resources needed to manage the incident. This also involves facilitating the interface between agencies to ensure effective interagency communication. Command and control, however, remain with those agencies. DEMOC's role is to faciliate and coordinate.
Once the disaster has ended, and the "all clear" given, response efforts shift to recovery. The recovery phase involves the efforts to restore and rebuild. This ties into mitigation and preparedness, because when we recovery from a disaster we want to make sure that we are more resilient than before. This is why lessons learned are used to improve our efforts in all phases of emergency management here at Georgetown.
As members of the Georgetown University community, it is important to know the evacuation routes and assembly areas for your buildings. Also know how to shelter-in-place and defend-in-place. Georgetown University Marshals are great points of contact if you want to learn more about these emergency response procedures. You may also contact DEMOC at email@example.com to learn more about the information that is available to you and to put you in contact with the Marshals in your building.