IRMA shows us the significant opportunities that exist in our national preparedness for handling catastrophic events and our ability to respond to them efficiently.
All governments face an increasing number of crises, often consisting of threats resulting from actions generated by representatives in different institutions, or as in this case, external shocks such as natural phenomena beyond control.
Authorities must always be at the forefront of efforts to manage these disruptive events, and earn the trust of citizens that is directly affected by how quickly institutions react in alert or crisis situations.
The complexities of modern crises often require the involvement of many actors, above and beyond the emergency services, and this requires effective coordination to achieve a successful outcome. he need for coordination also raises significant public governance issues, as crisis management functions are often exercised at the national level, coordinated at the centers of government.
The ability to coordinate crisis management is a critical element of good governance as it tests the ability of any government to provide the right responses at the right time to protect its citizens and businesses and mitigate the impact of disasters. The authorities need to ensure the appropriate tools and institutional framework for coordinated action.
With the passage of Irma, the Dominican government demonstrated that it has evolved in risk and crisis management, adapting to a new context and reality, overcoming the bad reputation that preceded it, inherited from previous administrations.
On this occasion, the emergency plans at all levels of government were put to the test, managing to integrate agencies such as the Presidency, Onamet, MOPC, MINERD, Public Health, among others, into the COE in a synchronized and coordinated manner.
The government was able to break with the tragic memories of the recent past, showing that we can as a nation build a culture of preparedness that emphasizes the importance of safety and prevention – at all levels of government, the private sector, communities and individual citizens. – sharing common goals and responsibilities for national security.
From the Presidency, a comprehensive national system of preparation, precaution and response to IRMA was directed, which had as its initial objective “Zero Human Losses”, a goal that we can proudly display thanks to the tenacity, dedication and hard work of so many volunteers who sacrificed their time, families and lives in favor of all Dominicans.
Author: Lara Guerrero