By Jim Dudlicek, NGA Director, Communications and External Affairs
September is National Preparedness Month, and many parts of the country are used to being on high alert this time of year as hurricanes and other severe weather events threaten lives and property.
While there’s no stopping Mother Nature, there are steps you can take not only to safeguard your business but also make sure you’re ready to assist the community in the aftermath.
Supermarkets are on the front lines of emergency response, both in preparation for an impending disaster such as an extreme weather event, and as one of the primary operations that must be up and running for a community to be able to recover after a disaster strikes. And you need to protect the business in which you have significant time and resources invested, so you can keep on serving the community long after the storm is a distant memory.
Entities such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and others offer extensive resources on preparing for severe weather events and how to cope after the storm passes – from guidance on pre-event procedures to printable resources that can be shared with associates and customers.
Federal, state and local governmental agencies are available to assist retailers, wholesalers and even trade associations, such as NGA, to coordinate response efforts to quickly get basic necessities such as food and water back into local communities.
Additionally, NGA is available to help its members contact their representatives in Congress and coordinate assistance with local district offices so communities can receive the aid and attention they desperately need during a crisis. Reach out to NGA’s Government Relations team at GR@nationalgrocers.org.
NGA has prepared a convenient, user-friendly toolkit that provides a summary of these resources, including contact information and handy links.