Blog 3: Public Information System
I feel that FEMA’s public information system is relevant to what we have learned in class, because many of the objectives that are used in NIMS were used during our crisis presentations. Public information consists of the processes, procedures and systems for communicating timely, accurate and accessible information. There is a main officer in charge, a PIO, who is responsible for identifying, crafting, prioritizing, verifying and disseminating a key message. The PIO works with other organizations and representatives to ensure the intended message is received to the public correctly. It is important to notice that the PIO’s role is scalable, and depending on the crisis will be able to adjust appropriately. In the video below, the PIO effectively releases information to the media while also addressing concerns from the public:
As I mentioned before, there are many similarities between the public information system and the ICS model. During our group presentations, each group had an Incident Commander who was responsible for disseminating information about the crisis to the public. The Incident Commander worked closely with other operations such as logistics, finance, and planning. Both the PIO and Incident Commander work with different operations and organizations to ensure the key message is valid and all information is reported.
Following FEMA’s public information system and ICS model allow vital information during a crisis to be verified and disseminated to the public in a timely manner. Both systems were implemented after national crises and have been used by federal, state, tribal, and territorial levels ever since.