Monday, May 23 – Key stakeholders of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) and regional National Disaster Coordinators/Directors of Disaster Management will meet in the Territory from May 24-27 for the second meeting of the CDEMA Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) at the Long Bay Beach Resort conference room.
The TAC, one of CDEMA’s decision-making organs, will provide critical stewardship required for advancing core areas identified by the CDEMA Coordinating Unit. The regional meeting is being hosted locally by the Government of the Virgin Islands through the Premier’s Office and the Department of Disaster Management in collaboration with CDEMA.
Mr. Elton Georges, CMG, OBE former Chairman of the National Emergency Operation Centre will chair the meeting when close to 40 delegates deliberate various agenda items. Acting Permanent Secretary in the Premier’s Office Ms. Sandra Ward said, “Mr. Georges was recommended as the meeting chair because of his intimate knowledge of the technical operations and management of CDEMA and especially since he was responsible for direct supervision of the Territory’s disaster management programme from 1983 to 2008.”
Conference delegates will discuss the Draft National Comprehensive Disaster Management (CDM) Policy, the Model Disaster Management Legislation, a strategy for adaptation of both Disaster Management Legislation and CDM Policy by CDEMA Participating States, a Comprehensive Disaster Management Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting System, and a proposal for advancing comprehensive disaster management beyond 2012.
The meeting will also focus on the implementation status of the 2007-2012 regional Comprehensive Disaster Management (CDM) Programme and receive input from the committee on the CDEMA work plans for the coming year.
A representative from the CARICOM Community Climate Change Centre is also expected to brief the TAC on the draft Regional Climate Change Implementation Plan which highlights the convergence between climate change adaptation and disaster management.
The opening ceremony will be held on Tuesday, May 24 at 7 pm and will feature the inaugural CDEMA Service Awards to recognise long-serving staff in regional National Disaster Offices and the CDEMA Coordinating Unit. His Excellency the Governor Mr. Boyd McCleary will deliver the feature address, while Premier and Minister of Finance Honourable Ralph T. O’Neal, OBE and CDEMA’s Executive Director Mr. Jeremy Collymore will also give remarks. The opening ceremony will be webcast live on www.cbnbvi.com, www.cdema.org.
TAC comprises the National Disaster Coordinators of the CDEMA 18 participating states and representatives of specialised regional organisations, such as those engaged in technological, meteorological and seismological fields whose programmes are directly related to the regional disaster management agenda.