The Emergency Management Office works to minimize the effects of major emergencies and disasters on the community through:
- Assessing community hazards and risks;
- Promoting and supporting preparedness activities;
- Writing disaster response and recovery plans;
- Training staff and conducting exercises to evaluate plans and systems;
- Building partnerships and coordinating plans with public agencies and private organizations;
- Maintaining an emergency operations center to coordinate emergency response efforts; and
- Coordinating disaster assistance programs.
The office relies on an integrated approach
involving many partners -- governmental agencies,
non-governmental organizations, businesses,
volunteer groups, and residents -– to accomplish its
work. These collaborative partnerships are essential
for the effective coordination of information, resources
and services as we work together to prepare for,
respond to and recover from major emergencies and
disasters affecting the community. Two of the office's
significant partnerships are the Washington County
Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program and the Emergency Management Cooperative for Washington County.
Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) Program
The Washington County Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program works closely with the Emergency Management Office to build more resilient communities and ensure the county's public health system is prepared to effectively respond to a range of public health threats, including infectious diseases, natural disasters, and biological, chemical, nuclear, and radiological events. Program staff plan for and respond to such events, coordinate with other departments,
agencies, and disciplines with roles in those events, develop community partnerships to enhance response to large-scale events, and manage a cadre of Medical Reserve Corps volunteers who can assist public health staff in the event
of an emergency.
Emergency Management Cooperative (EMC)
The Emergency Management Cooperative (EMC) for Washington County is committed to the development and maintenance of a countywide, integrated system to prepare for, respond to, recover from, and mitigate against disasters. The EMC is comprised of Washington County, the cities of Beaverton, Cornelius, Forest Grove, Hillsboro, North Plains, Sherwood, Tigard, and Tualatin, Clean Water Services, and Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue. The purpose of the EMC is to enhance the level of disaster and emergency preparedness and coordination within and across the boundaries of the participating jurisdictions by focusing on improvements to emergency management structures, systems, facilities, plans, procedures, training, and exercising.
The EMC is governed by a committee comprised of executives from the participating jurisdictions. The committee provides strategic direction to the emergency management work of the participating jurisdictions, ensures integration
of that work, and provides oversight and accountability for program performance. The EMC's work is managed and coordinated by an EMC director. Among other things, the director's duties include developing and maintaining comprehensive, integrated, and effective emergency management and multi-agency coordination systems in concert with the participating jurisdictions.