FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
District of Squamish and Skwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation) Emergency Program receives national Award of Excellence
SQUAMISH, B.C. – The District of Squamish and Squamish Nation have received the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP)/Motorola Award for Excellence in Emergency Preparedness. The award was presented at the CACP Annual Conference in Montréal on Sunday, July 16.
“Our work to create a single and unified emergency management program is fundamental to improving our collective resilience across both our communities through shared planning, processes, training and communications,” says District of Squamish Mayor Patricia Heintzman. “Coordination in emergency preparedness is critical in our ability to respond to adverse events and we have tremendous community collaborators in the Squamish Nation who have a shared conviction in joint emergency planning. We are proud to receive this award and we thank the CACP for the recognition.”
“This showcases that collaborative, Government to Government partnerships, in the interest of the safety for all residents of the Squamish Valley, can make a difference”, says Skwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw spokesman, Councilor Chris Lewis. “The recognition of the work undertaken by the District of Squamish and Skwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw by the CACP demonstrates that we are creating effective, cutting edge, joint initiatives that are being recognized as promising practices. We are pleased to receive this recognition along with the District and thank the CACP for it.”
The award was judged on criteria including emergency management program implementation, emergency communications, community engagement and effective use of resources.
In 2016, the District of Squamish and Squamish Nation joined forces in emergency management efforts to enhance community resiliency and support cross-community preparedness and response. The organizations collaborated to facilitate ‘Operation Gumboots’, a joint evacuation exercise involving over ten agencies and 120 personnel. The emergency exercise, which involved the activation of the District’s emergency operations centre as well as door-to-door visits to over 600 homes in the Brackendale and Cheakamus reserve neighbourhoods, was the first of its kind in the Sea to Sky corridor. The District of Squamish and Squamish Nation also launched the Squamish Alert and Squamish Nation Alert emergency notification system. The systems allow both the District and the Squamish Nation to send coordinated emergency messaging across the community by phone, email or text.
Rachel Boguski | Communications Coordinator
District of Squamish | Hardwired for Adventure
Skwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation)
604.980.4553 | firstname.lastname@example.org