Unfortunately, many within the Afrikan-Amerikan (a.k.a. New Afrikan) community don't have natural disasters or crises seriously, and our communities failure to prepare itself for a natural disaster is indicative of that criticism. We are approximately Eleven (11) years removed from Hurricane Katrina, and not ONE Afrikan-Amerikan community has effectively or independently prepared itself in light of the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina.
We can no longer afford to depend on the government or any outside sources; our vulnerability becomes more fragile when we are dependent on outsiders or others to do for us what we are capable of doing for ourselves. Developing our own emergency network/manual is no longer an option, it is now a necessity towards the survival of our People/Community. The key to surviving a natural disaster, or at least minimizing fatalities, is being prepared and organized. This emergency response manual is only a blue print in the service of our communities, it contains two (2) inter-connecting components, for example:
1.) A plan for the individual family
2.) A more complexed and long-range plan designed to prepare our communities.
- Abdul Olugbala Shakur
Home Preparation and Survival
Many of our people are unprepared for natural disasters or a major crisis, and oftentimes, many of our people attempt to prepare themselves at the last minute, when food and/or emergency supplies at most stores are almost depleted, and then they find themselves competing for limited supplies, or looting in order to obtain their basic necessities to survive. This is not how you prepare yourself or your family. To the contrary, this is a last minute act of desperation; no disrespect intended, but this is not a smart decision making process. We as a People, for the most part, do not think strategically nor tactically, and this is one of our major obstacles towards solving our day-to-day problems and moving forward as a People. I ask: Why would you wait to the last minute to prepare yourself or your family? Especially when you know every year there exists the potential for a natural disaster or major crisis. I ask: Do you really value your safety and that of your family? Because, if you do, your action/response(s) is not indicative of such values.
We have to take this issue more seriously than we are, NOT WHEN THE DISASTER OR CRISIS IS AT OUR FRONT DOOR! I equally understand that most Afrikan-Amerikan families don't know what to do, nor do they have access to the information that would empower them with the capacity to effectively prepare themselves. So as a direct result, we developed this comprehensive emergency response manual, a blue-print towards the construction of a community-based emergency response network. The first step towards achieving this goal is to prepare each and every family/house-hold in our community. Once this is established, this would serve as the foundation for the development and implementation of our community emergency network operation.
Each household must develop an emergency plan based on the natural disaster that are common in their area. Each natural disaster will determine how one respond and/or prepare; preparing for an earthquake is different from preparing for a Hurricane, though the supplies that are require in facilitating our preparation are similar, if not the same, but it is imperative towards one success to clearly identify all the disasters that you are subjected to annually and organize accordingly.
There exist three (3) primary components that complements an effective emergency response plan:
1. An emergency plan
2. Home survival kit
An emergency plan: The first step in surviving a natural disaster and/or crisis, is having a practical and comprehensive plan, it doesn't have to be elaborate or complicated, keep it simple. The unfortunate reality, Hurricane Katrina was and is our learning curve, it taught us what not to do, as well as what we must do to survive a natural disaster. Most of our People/community in New Orleans did not have a plan and as a direct result many of them suffered more than what they had to. An emergency response plan would have dramatically mitigated the unnecessary suffering.
The basic emergency plan should at least consist of the following:
1. An Evacuation Plan: You and your family should conduct emergency drills at least once or twice a month. Each family member must learn how to evacuate, and if you live in an apartment building or housing project, the evacuation becomes a little more complicated and urgent, you cannot afford to wait until the last minute to evacuate. If you live in an apartment building or housing project, you need to purchase a nope-ladder(s), or long-ladders, if this is possible from an economic stand point, if not, you and your neighbors should pool your money together and purchase these items that will serve all that are impacted. The nopeladders must be strategically located. Note: To ensure success, we insist that you seek training from an expert on how to install and use the rope-ladders/and long-ladders. Oftentimes during certain emergency evacuations family members are separated, so it becomes critical that each family if possible) designate a specific location to meet or call, from a relative house to your Mosque/Church, or even an emergency relief center! Each family should also develop their own identification ID card; this ID card will have the basic info, such as name, multiple contact numbers, and medical information if applicable. This would help emergency relief workers to help reunite family members, and/or identify dead bodies.
I reiterate: identify your specific disaster zone(s), such as floods, earthquakes, wildfire s, snowstorms, and your emergency plan must be based on the specific disaster(s) in you, your area/community. I would also add, in your evacuation plan, try to avoid those routes with heavy traffic, so studying every route in your community/area is important in developing the most effective evacuation emergency plan. B) Home Survival Kit:
1. bottled water: You don't have to pay for bottled water, bottle your own water before the natural disaster/or crisis affect the drinking water.
2. Non-perishable food items.
3. Faraday flashlights.
4. Old Brooklyn Lanterns.
5. Insta light emergency bulbs.
7. Matches/Waterproof Matches.
9. Battery-Operated Radios.
10. Cellphones/Disposal cellphones (if affordable).
12. Lap-top Computers.
13. Portable Fire Extinguisher(s).
14. Portable Generator: Don't use generator(s) indoors.
15. Space bags: These bags are good for putting your clothes in, along with other valuables, such as, family photos, and important documents; and have your contact info either inside the bag, or attached to the outside, whatever method(s) is most effective.
17. Shovel/Short-hand shovel(s).
19. Hacksaw/Hacksaw Blades.
21. Sleeping Bag(s).
22. Ziploc Bags.
23. Water Purification kit/System.
24. Weapons to defend your home and/or family: a) Guns. b) Crossbows. c) Knives. d) Tasers. e) Pepper Spray(s).
25. Lifejackets/Life-Rafts (if applicable: Flood-Zones).
26. Whistles and clickers, these items are designed to help emergency workers locate you, if you are not able to blow your whistles, the clickers can be just as effective.
27. First Aid Kit: The Home-based first aid kit will be different from the mobile/carried first aid kits; space is not that much of an issue, affording one the opportunity to stock more medical supplies, but the basics will still be required. We also insist that every family take a basic first aid course.
C) Bug-Out-Bag: As you know, some emergencies will require that you and your family leave the house/or shelter, and oftentimes many of our people rush out of their homes emptied handed and unprepared for the emergency that is about to confront them. A Bug-Out-Bag is a back pack that contains all the basic necessities that one keeps on the ready at all times. When a natural disaster hits and it’s time to evacuate, everything you and/or your family will need should be in your Bug-OutBag; if you have a family, you should have at least two to three additional Bug-Out-Bags. (i.e. Depending on how many family members you will be responsible for), in addition to your primary Bug-Out-Bag. Each family member should wear a survival parka shell, these waterproof jackets have multiple pockets providing additional space to carry more emergency supplies.
Your Bug-Out-Bag should consist of the following items:
1. A pair of thick thermal underwear (top and bottom).
2. A liner and outer socks.
3. Rugged Gloves.
4. Battery-Operated Radios.
5. Lap-top Computer(s)/Cellphone(s).
7. Water filter system/water purification tablets.
8. Water Bladder (e.g. MRS Platypus 2-Liter).
9. Sleeping Bag(s)/Lifejackets/Life-Preservers.
10. Flashlights/extra batteries, and LED Headlamp(s).
11. Fire Starter-Butane lighter/Flint/Waterproof Matches.
12. Folding Multiple-function tool/knife (8).
13. Legal and Registered Gun(s).
16. Nonperishable food: e.g. Nuts, Dry Fruits, Rice, Chocolate, Raisins, Granola Bars, Trail Mix.
17. First Aid Kit
Your first aid kit should consist of the following:
a) A couple of pairs of nitrile gloves.
b) Two tubes of antibiotic ointment.
c) Rolls of one-inch-wide safety tape/Butterfly sutures in various sizes.
d) Two sterile suture kits.
e) Two Bottles Ibuprofen.
f) At least three thermometers.
g) 25 Alcohol pre-pads.
h) Three tubes of liquid hand soap.
i) 1 or 2 Bottles of Multi-vitamins.
j) Loperamide Hydrochloride Anti-diarrhea caplets.
k) Katadyn Micropur MP1 water purification tablets.
l) Three packages of glucose tablets (For Hypoglycemia).
m) One pair of EMS shears.
n) Two lock forceps.
o) Two small pair scissors.
p) One pair of toenail clippers.
q) One pair of tweezers.
r) 20 quick-clot antimicrobial hemostatic pack, 50gm (stop bleeding fast).
s) Two packages of sewing needles in various sizes.
t) One small flashlight/headlamp(s).
Note: We suggest that you pick up a copy of the U.S. Army first aid manual. Also check out the following sites:
Afrikan American Community Emergency Response Network
We will avoid bureaucratic stagnation, so instead of establishing one central agency, every state will have its own Afrikan-Amerikan Community Emergency Response Network (A.A.C.E.R.N.). This network will be responsible for preparing every Afrikan-Amerikan (aka: New Afrikan) community in their state (i.e. jurisdiction) for a natural disaster/crisis. This network will be elected/selected by our communities. We will develop a state-wide ballot system that would allow our People/Community to vote. Only those who live in the New Afrikan (aka: Afrikan-Amerikan) community will be eligible to sit on the Board of Directors (A.A.C.E.R.N.), and they must be well known community-activists that has a history of serving our community. The community will have the power to remove any Board member they are dissatisfied with. The A.A.C.E.R.N. will work with the Amerikan-Red Cross, and other emergency services, but we will not be subordinate to them, nor will we be dictated to or serve as a government puppet!
The A.A.C.E.R.N. will consist of:
2. Director of Expropriation
3. 3 additional Board Members
4. Deputy Director
5. Director of Information
7. Emergency Evacuation Chief Coordinator
9. Chief Medical Advisor
10. Chief Security Coordinator
11. Chief Meteorologist
12. Logistic Management Coordinator
Emergency Response Committee
Every city with New Afrikan communities will be eligible to form an Emergency Response Committee (E.R.C.). The same rules that apply to the A.A.C.E.R.N. also apply to the E.R.C., every E.R.C. member will be elected/selected by the Afrikan-Amerikan community in that city. They will be known community-activists with no affiliation with the government or law enforcement. The People will also have the power to remove any member from the E.R.C. they are dissatisfied with. ALL E.R.C. are accountable to the state-based A.A.C.E.R.N. in their state. Each E.R.C. will be required to file a monthly report to the state-based A.A.C.E.R.N., the E.R.C. status report will basically consist of all relevant information pertaining to their stated purpose and mission/goals, as well as their progresses and failures, and more important ly financial report. This is just a brief example. The E.R.C. will be ultimately responsible for implementing this blue-print, the E.R.C. will also have community level representatives.
The E.R.C. will consist of:
1. Executive Coordinator.
2. Expropriation Coordinator.
3. Deputy Coordinator
4. Emergency Evacuation Coordinator.
6. Information Coordinator.
8. Deputy Medical Advisor.
9. Security Coordinator 10. Deputy Meteorologist.
11. Logistic Coordinator
12. Three additional Board Members.
Emergency Response Services
1. Emergency Survey Unit (E.S.U.).
2. Emergency Mobile Clinics (E.M.C.).
3. Emergency Ambulance Services (E.A.S.).
4. Emergency Medical Stations (E.M.S.).
5. Emergency Medical Staff Assistance (E.M.S.A.).
6. Emergency Evacuation Unit (E.E.U.).
7. Emergency Expropriation Network (E.E.N.).
8. Emergency Security Network (E.S.N.).
9. Emergency Information Center (E.I.C.).
10. Emergency Food and Water Services (E.F.W.S.).
11. Emergency Logistic Management Network (E.L.M.N.).
12. Emergency Mobile Safety Deposit Box (E.M.S.D.B.).
13. Community Emergency Trust Fund (C.E.T.F.).
Emergency Survey Unit
The E.S.U. will be activated before, during and after a natural disaster. The E.S.U. will monitor all the local dams, levees, blood walls/gates. They will also search for structural damages in all the local housing projects, apartments, schools, bridges, freeway overpasses. The E.S.U. will conduct monthly tests of all drinking water. Especially during and after a crisis/natural disaster. The E.S.U. will also identify all Afrikan-Amerikan communities/areas that are prone to floods, earthquakes, hurricanes, tornados, snow and tropical storms, and bush/wildfires. This unit will file a report every 90 days detailing their findings. A copy of this report will be sent to the state-based A.A.C.E.R.N., the city-based E.R.C. and the designated emergency response services. The A.A.C.E.R.N. in that state will share this report with the community, local and state emergency services.
Emergency Mobile Clinics
During Hurricane Katrina many of our people were not able to reach a hospital or receive emergency medical attention, and as a direct result, many of them suffered, if not died. The E.M.C. will be fully equipped, and capable of performing certain emergency operations and/or procedures, which will include X-rays. The E.M.C.s will be dispatched to the hardest hit areas, especially those in rural areas. We will also send an E.M.C. to all the emergency relief centers and evacuee shelters. We will also have Emergency Mobile Boat Clinics which would also allow us to reach our people in the flooded areas.
Emergency Ambulance Services
We will convert old/new vans and boats into fully equipped ambulances, the E.A.S. will be activated/and active all year round, but during a crisis/natural disaster their priority will be to:
1. Reach the most vulnerable.
2. To transport the injured to the Emergency Medical Station (E.M.S.), Emergency Mobile Clinics (E .M.C.), and when applicable, to the local hospitals that have not been damaged by the crisis/natural disaster.
Note: The E.A.S. will also develop its own emergency dispatch system.
Emergency Medical Station
The E.M.S. are temporary make-shift hospitals (i.e., Triages). During Hurricane Katrina many of the local hospitals were damaged, if not seriously affected by the flood water, and there were those that were just too far away. We will establish fully equipped E.M.S. in areas designated safe/secured. We will also set up E.M.S. at designated emergency relief centers and evacuee shelters.
Emergency Medical Staff Assistance
The E.M.S.A. are our first responders. They will be thoroughly trained in first aid and other advanced medical treatment. We will have at least three (3) E.M.S.A. on every block. They will be responsible for the People on their block.
Their responsibility will consist of:
1. Teaching everyone on their block first aid.
2. Providing every house on their block with a first aid kit.
3. The E.M.S.A. will also be responsible for teaching everyone on their block how to swim. Identifying all the most vulnerable on their block, such as the handicapped, elders, children and the sick.
4. They will develop a database of all those who live on their block that suffers from some type of health problems. This database will describe the health problem(s), as well as provide a list of the medication they are taking, and the name of their doctor/health-care provider(s).
5. The E.M.S.A. will also develop emergency medical bracelets for those listed in their data base. This would allow emergency medical workers access to their medical data during a crisis/natural disaster. We will develop a computer program designed to secure this data against theft.
Emergency Evacuation Unit
During Hurricane Katrina many of our people died because they did not have the means or know how to evacuate, or the evacuation was not properly organized.
The E.E.U. will be responsible for:
1. Developing an effective evacuation plan for the community.
2. The E.E.U. will coordinate the evacuation of the community.
3. The E.E.U. will conduct evacuation drills at least two to three times a year, more inapplicable.
4. The E.E.U. will develop an evacuation emergency plan manual and distribute copies to our communities.
5. The E.E.U. will establish a working relationship with the school district that would allow them to utilize all available school buses to evacuate the people. The E.E.U. will also have a The Afrikan-Amerikan Community Emergency Response Network Manual
6. Number of boats in their services.
Note: Children, Elders, The Sick and Women will be our priority.
Emergency Expropriation Network
We do not agree with the government position on looting during a crisis/natural disaster. We also equally disagree with looting as an effective means towards obtaining sustenance for human survival during a crisis/natural disaster. We have a more effective method to achieve this objective. During a crisis/natural disaster the E.E.N. will dispatch a unit to all the affected grocery, hardware and clothing stores along with a unit from our Emergency Security Network (E.S.N.) to secure these businesses while the E.E.N. expropriate the necessary supplies.
The E.E.N. will focus on the following supplies:
1. All food items, including Baby food and Candy.
2. Bottled water, milk, juice and sodas.
3. Coats, raincoats, sweatshirts/pants, thermal tops/bottoms, socks, gloves, wool bennies, boots, blankets, sleeping bags, space bags, towels.
4. Matches, waterproof matches, flints, lighters, flashlights, lanterns, flares, batteries.
5. Paper cups/plates, plastic forks/spoons, toilet paper, paper towels, pampers, tampons, ziplock bags, garbage bags, cooking pots/pans.
6. Barbeque grills, charcoal, portable fire extinguishers, portable generators, battery-operated radios.
7. Ropes, rope ladders, ladders, hammers, hacksaws, hacksaw blades, saws, hatchets, axes, shovels, shorthand shovels, screw drivers, socket wrench set, water hoses, wheel barrels, tents, life-rafts, Life jackets, chainsaws.
8. The Emergency Logistic Management Network (E.L.M.N.) will coordinate the distribution of the above supplies to those in need. The E.E.N. will inventory each item that was expropriated by the E.E.N. in the service of the People and provide copies to all those business owners affected by our survival expropriation. We believe that this will minimize unnecessary looting.
Emergency Security Network
THE E.S.N. will have two (2) different divisions:
1. An Armed Division.
2. An Unarmed Division.
The E.S.N. will be a legitimate community-based security network, not cops, paid informants or puppets for law-enforcement. The E.S.N. will be a community-based controlled and licensed network that will be activated during a crisis/natural disaster. Unfortunately, there were some truth to the report that at least a few young men decided to use Hurricane Katrina as an opportunity to victimize their own People, but so-called law-enforcement also used Hurricane Katrina as an opportunity to murder some of our young men, as their own record would reflect! We will dispatch units from our E.S.N. to secure our communities, children, women, elders, as well as our evacuee-shelters/relief centers.
Note: The unarmed divisions will The Afrikan-Amerikan Community Emergency Response Network Manual assist the Emergency Evacuation Unit in evacuating the people, as well as in other designated area of responsibilities.
Emergency Information Center
One of the principal element inherent to an effective preparation is information, accurate in formation facilitates a community endeavors to prepare itself for a crisis/natural disaster. One of our primary weaknesses is not having enough information, or the infrastructure to process and distribute vital information to our people/Community.
The E.I.C. will be responsible for:
1. Developing an emergency survival manual. This manual will contain all the necessary information on what to do during specific crises/natural disasters. For example, though there are basic similarities, each natural force has its own distinctive characteristics, which call for a specific response. This manual will have an emergency response plan for each natural force e.g. Tornados, Floods, Earthquakes, Hurricanes, wildfires, just to name a few.
2. The E.I.C. will develop an emergency response directory listing the addresses, phone numbers, e-mails and websites of all our emergency response services that are listed in our manual, including all state-based A.A.C.E.R.N. and city-based E.R.C. in the country.
3. During Hurricane Katrina many of our families were separated and our children lost. The E.I.C. will develop an Afrikan-Amerikan (i.e., New Afrikan) family central database: Every city-based E.I.C. will develop an Afrikan-Amerikan central database containing all Afrikan Amerikans in their city. For example: Let's say we have the Shakur's family, the database will list all family members and relatives, and the pictures of the immediate family members (This is optional, and a decision reserved for each family), this option will be available to all New Afrikan families listed in our E.I.C. database. Each family will have their own personal emergency instructions, instructing their individual family members what to do, where to go and who to contact. Each family will have their own personal and secured access code to their specific page on our data-base.
This would provide emergency workers access to vital information to re-unite lost loved-ones, it would also allow emergency workers to immediately identify lost children or even dead bodies.
4. It will also be the responsibility of the E.I.C. to develop an emergency communication network that would allow all our emergency services/workers to communicate with one another during a crisis/natural disaster. The E.I.C. must develop their own dispatch system. The E.I.C. is one of the most vital components in the success of an independent Afrikan-Amerikan (i.e. New Afrikan) controlled emergency response network. Note: High-tech will play a major role in this endeavor.
Emergency Food and Water Services
During Hurricane Katrina many of our people went three to six days without food or water. The E.F.W.S. will establish an emergency food and water banks that will be distributed during a crisis/natural disaster. During natural disasters the E.F.W.S. will establish emergency food and water stations in unaffected areas, as well as relief centers and evacuee shelters. The Afrikan-Amerikan Community Emergency Response Network Manual E.F.W.S. will also have mobile kitchens that will distribute food and water to families that are trapped in affected areas.
Emergency Logistic Management Network
The E.L.M.N. will be a multi-task network for it will work closely with all the Emergency Response Services listed in this manual. The E.L.M.N. will be responsible for ensuring that all Afrikan Amerikan (New Afrikan) emergency services are fully equipped, adequately supplied and functional. They will also establish and maintain a number of stockpiles of emergency supplies throughout their jurisdiction in areas designated by the Emergency Survey Unit (E.S.U.)
The E.L.M.N. inventory will consist of:
1. Medical equipment/Supplies, and first aid kit.
2. Bottled water.
3. Non-perishable food.
4. Coats, raincoats, boots, wool bennies, thermal shirts and pants, sweatshirts and pants, socks and gloves.
5. Matches/waterproof matches, flints, flares, fire-wicks, butane lighters, flashlights, olde Brooklyn lanterns, Insta bulbs, batteries.
6. Blankets, sleeping bags, tents, life-rafts, lifejackets, space bags, towels.
7. Garbage bags, zip lock bags, toilet paper, pampers, tampons, paper plates/cups, plastic forks/spoons, pots and pans, barbecue grills, charcoal.
8. Battery-operated radios, cellphones, lap-tops computers, portable fire extinguishers, portable generators, water purification systems.
9. Ladders, rope ladders, ropes, hacksaws, hacksaw blades, saws, chainsaws, hammers, screw drivers, shovels, short-hand shovels, socket wrench sets, axes, hatchets, water hose, wheel barrels.
The E.L.M.N. will also be responsible for coordinating the distribution of supplies during a crisis/natural disaster. The E.L.M.N. will also make sure that every New Afrikan family is armed with a survival kit, especially those who cannot afford to purchase the necessary supplies.
Emergency Mobile Safety Deposit Box
During most Tornados, Hurricanes, Floods and Wildfires many of our people lose valuable document s, family pictures and other family valuables, such as jewelry. The E.M.S.D.B. will convert trailer trucks into mobile safety deposit boxes. They will have small safe deposit boxes securely mounted on the inside walls of the trucks with locked doors. Each New Afrikan (i.e. Afrikan Amerikan) family that sign up for this service will be assigned a box(s) and given a key. The E.M.S.D.B. will drive throughout the community hours before the potential crisis/natural disaster and allow those families to place their valuables in their secured safety deposit box(s).
The E.M.S.D.B. will be driven to a safe place/location that will be secured and guarded by a division of our Emergency Security Network (armed division). The community will always select the drivers and guards of these Mobile Safety Deposit Boxes.
My People, what disturbed me the most about Hurricane Katrina was not the government or law enforcement failure to help our people/community, it was watching New Afrikan Men Standing around helplessly (Note: I am fully aware that many of our Brothas did take the initiative to help our People/Community during Hurricane Katrina, but for the most part, we were missing in action!), while our community, women, children, elders, handicapped and sick suffered. For the most part, our Men did not know what to do, though many of them tried to help. I don't mean to sound harsh, but if we expect to avoid another Hurricane Katrina, we must conduct a true and honest critique of our failures. But this is an opportunity for us to empower ourselves/community with the capacity and capability to prepare our People/Community for any type of crisis/natural disaster, without depending on others to do for us what we should be doing for ourselves. Please understand, this manual is not an invitation to become dependent on government or any other outside entity, this manual is a call to stand up for us and take responsibility for us and of our future.