Saturday, March 25, 2017

NEMO Secretariat

While coordination may not be easily defined, its absence is characterized by gaps in service to affected populations; duplication of effort; inappropriate assistance; inefficient use of resources; bottlenecks, impediments, and slow reaction to changing conditions; and frustration of relief providers, officials and survivors in general, an unsatisfactory response to the emergency.

 

Coordination is a result of actions to harmonize individual responses to maximize impact and achieve synergy a situation where the overall effect is greater than the sum of the parts. There can be a little coordination or a lot of coordination and, for the most part, the mo re coordination the better.

 

As such the NEMO Secretariat is responsible for the co-ordination of all response activities before, during and after a change of an Alert Level. This is done from NEMO Headquarters and, if it is activated, from the National Emergency Operations Centre [NEOC].

 

National Emergency Management Organisation

The National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) in Saint Lucia is a collection of Government, Non Government, Faith Based Organisations, Civic Society and many others collectively responsible for having the Nation in a state of preparedness in case of an emergency; also for responding to the needs of the Nation after a disaster.  The Secretariat is responsible for and co-ordinating the response at local, regional and international levels.

During an event NEMO is part of a larger network that comes into existence to respond to a disaster. The Organization comprises several Governmental Departments and NGOs responsible for response and recovery activities.  None of them necessarily chair the Disaster Committees.  The District Disaster Chairs and their members are volunteers from the community; we will mention here: The Royal Saint Lucia Police Force, the Fire Service and the Saint Lucia Air and Seaports Authority.

 

The Organisation of NEMO is shown below:

 

Relationship between NEMO Committees
The Disaster Management System of Saint Lucia is a three tiered one:
  • NATIONAL – NEMAC- National Emergency Management Advisory Committee
  • COMMITTEES - National and District Disaster Committees
  • Coordinating Unit - NEMO Secretariat

 

It is expected that all levels of NEMO should work together in preparedness, emergency and recovery activities. Given that all three levels have to execute similar activities, albeit with different mandates, coordination is absolutely vital to ensure optimal use of the limited resources available.

 

It is the responsibility of the NEMO Secretariat to bring the three committees together and to involve them in emergency planning. In the case of a response to an emergency or a disaster, it is the responsibility of the NEMO Sec to co-ordinate the response of all Committees, through the NEOC, in order to avoid duplication of activities and to maximize the use of resources in the response. Therefore, the NEMO Sec shall ensure that there is collaboration amongst the three Levels in the planning and execution of their mandates.

 

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