Midwest contingency Planners

News  

  • FEMA Announces revised NIMS Training Program 5/28/20

FEMA’s National Integration Center has released the updated National Incident Management System Training Program, which sets forth a structure for national training and establishes the roles and responsibilities of FEMA and members of the NIMS stakeholder community. It identifies specific activities for developing, maintaining, and sustaining a training program that prepares all incident personnel to understand their respective responsibilities and work together during incidents.

The revised NIMS Training Program introduces training Focus Areas based on incident personnel’s position and responsibility. These areas include the Incident Command System, Joint Information System, Emergency Operation Center, and the Multiagency Coordination Group.

The revised NIMS Training Program can be found here: NIMS Training Program.

  • Useful COVID-19 Links and Information: (visit the Members-Only Content for additional information)

As always - be cautious. The FBI is seeing a rise in fraud schemes related to COVID-19 (see below)

  • Northeastern University’s Global Resilience Institute, has launched a short online course that provides life-saving skills for dealing with the COVID-19 outbreak.  Please feel free to share this with your families and colleagues.

      Click here to see the course: COVID-19: How to be Safe and Resilient

The course is on a web platform that allows universal access.  Corporations, companies, and organizations should consider pushing this out to their employees. With everyone working online, this seems to be the best way to have a trusted source get this critical information directly to as many as possible with the encouragement that they spend the under one-hour to work their way through the self-navigating, 9 short-modules for the course:

1.    Introduction to Being Safe and Resilient

2.    Mastering Washing Your Hands

3.    Avoid Touching Your Face to Reduce Risk

4.    Managing Your Household

5.    Disinfecting Your Surfaces

6.    Properly Using Masks and Gloves

7.    Navigating Public Spaces

8.    Staying Connected with Older Relatives, Neighbors, and Friends

9.    Enhancing Community Resilience by Becoming a COVID-19 Leader

Information about FEMA dashboard responses, and cyber fraud/crime scams:
    Emergency response: To review what FEMA is doing, go to www.FEMA.gov. To review the FEMA/National Business Emergency Operations Center Dash Board which provides case counts, state information and a chat feature, go to https://fema.connectedsolutions.com/nbeoc.

    Cyber Risks/Criminals:  The FBI reports scammers are leveraging the COVID-19 pandemic to steal your money, your personal information, or both. Protect yourself and do your research before clicking on links purporting to provide information on the virus; donating to a charity online or through social media; contributing to a crowdfunding campaign; purchasing products online; or giving up your personal information to receive money or other benefits. The FBI advises you to be on the lookout for the following:


    FAKE CDC EMAILS:  Watch out for emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or other organizations claiming to offer information on the virus. Do not click links or open attachments you do not recognize. Fraudsters can use links in emails to deliver malware to your computer to steal personal information or to lock your computer and demand payment. Be wary of websites and apps claiming to track COVID-19 cases worldwide. Criminals are using malicious websites to infect and lock devices until payment is received.


    PHISHING EMAILS - Look out for phishing emails asking you to verify your personal information to receive an economic stimulus check from the government. While talk of economic stimulus checks has been in the news cycle, government agencies are not sending unsolicited emails seeking your private information to send you money. Phishing emails may also claim to be related to charitable contributions, general financial relief, airline carrier refunds, fake cures and vaccines, and fake testing kits.


    COUNTERFEIT TREATMENTS OR EQUIPMENT:  Be cautious of anyone selling products that claim to prevent, treat, diagnose, or cure COVID-19. Be alert to counterfeit products such as sanitizing products and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), including N95 respirator masks, goggles, full face shields, protective gowns, and gloves. More information on unapproved or counterfeit PPE can be found at www.cdc.gov/niosh. You can also find information on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration website, www.fda.gov and the Environmental Protection Agency website, www.epa.gov. Report counterfeit products at www.ic3.gov and to the National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination website at iprcenter.gov

    COVID-19 Related Small Business Links and Information:

    Grants

    Facebook. Learn how to apply for part of Facebook’s $100 million grant program for small businesses impacted by COVID-19.

    James Beard Foundation started a Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund to provide micro-grants to independent food and beverage small businesses in need.

    Amazon. For Seattle’s South Lake Union and Regrade neighborhoods, a $5 million relief fund to provide cash grants to small businesses in the area that need assistance.

    Fundera. Information and advice for business grants and a list of 107 verified startup and small business grants. (Not COVID-19 specific.)

    Loans

    Kiva. Apply with expanded eligibility, maximum loan size increased to $15,000, and a grace period up to six months.

    Mainvest. See if you’re eligible to receive a 0% interest loan of $2,000.

    WaFD Bank. Apply for a 5-year business line of credit with 90-days interest free of up to $30,000.

    US Bank. Learn about the programs US Bank is offering their customers.

    Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation. Currently at the fundraising stage, the foundation will offer zero interest loans to help restaurants reopen.

    Other financial assistance

    GoFundMe. GoFundMe is hosting fundraisers for small businesses. Customers can start and donate now to any business. Business owners can claim their business and apply for a matching grant from the Small Business Relief Fund.

    Ford. Learn how Ford is giving customers who buy new vehicles through Ford Credit the option to delay their first payment for 90 days, and providing payment options for existing Ford Credit customers who are having payment difficulty.

    Bank of America. Learn about the programs Bank of America is offering to help their customers, including payment deferrals and refunds on fees.

    Marketing and promotion assistance

    Google. Google will distribute $340 million in ad credits worldwide. They can be used at any point until the end of 2020 across Google Ads platforms.

    Yelp. Read about the $25 million in relief that Yelp has announced to support independent local restaurant and nightlife businesses, in the form of waived advertising fees, and free advertising, products and services.

    Kabbage. Sign up and sell gift certificates for your business online. Revenue is deposited as early as a day after customers buy their gift certificate.

    Tools

    Facebook for Business. A new Business Resource Hub that details the resources Facebook provides to businesses.

    Google. See all of the Google resources for businesses.

    Microsoft. Office 365 customers can get Teams (video conferencing) for free.

    Zoom. Connect with others through video conferencing. The free version of Zoom can host up to 100 participants for up to 40 minutes.

    LogMeIn. Get a Remote Work Toolkit to make a “seamless transition to a remote workforce.”

    Atlassian. Providing free access to all of their cloud working tools for small businesses (10 or fewer employees).

    Cisco. Offering free video conferencing services for small businesses now working remotely.

    Federal, state and local Coronavirus info

    Federal, state and local government and business groups with information that might affect your business:


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