Parish Councils are being encouraged to establish emergency plans to help their communities cope with unforeseen events and to ensure the most vulnerable are cared for. Business, industry, the media and Government have plans which are regularly tested and updated; but at parish level, what sort of plan will work?
The first question is how parish councils can most effectively support the emergency services. Local knowledge is invaluable. Knowing where to find useful resources and equipment, identifying people who may need priority help, and gaining access to buildings which can be used as rest centres.
The key is a cohesive community where individuals support each other at all times, not just when a blue or red light appears in their street.
It's a surprisingly complex subject, but one which parish councils will find rewarding if they take it seriously.