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Industry spotlight: Local government

Photo of David Gilbert, VP of Americas

David Gilbert

VP Americas

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Oct 4, 2018
3 min read

Why are crisis and hazard communications so important?

When an emergency occurs, the need to communicate a health hazard - at scale - is immediate.

After all, the initial assignment of any council or shire is to keep the community safe during a crisis event or emergency.

Alerting populations in danger with important hazard information, organizing emergency assembly points, and coordinating relief efforts means that a robust and effective way to communicate is essential. When a crisis event occurs, there is no time to waste – a government's hazard communication program must be decisive, informative, and fast.

Crisis response and emergency management

Successful crisis response is defined by the capacity to assess and act quickly and decisively, whilst communicating with impacted groups, the community, and stakeholders using a number of alternative methods - including SMS, email, automatic alerts, social updates, and more.

Emergency management for an entire community means that crisis response plans, communication networks, and preventative measures need to be top-notch. Communities, staff, stakeholders, and contractors need to be informed about what to do when a health or physical hazard occurs - before it ever happens. This ensures that they can take protective measures to minimize potential impact in the event of a crisis, incident, or emergency.

Proactive alerting and notifications

With Whispir, councils and shires can provide a community-wide solution that allows them to manage crisis communications in addition to their other emergency planning responses. Plus, it doesn't take an entire team to implement. A designated representative for hazard response can handle most - if not all of it - from one centralized hub.

Our omnichannel communications platform allows government bodies to directly engage with emergency services, schools, community bodies, and individual residents to coordinate effective action against a number of hazards including but not limited to:

  • Chemical hazards like oil spills

  • Equipment failures in and outside the work area

  • Natural disasters and severe weather

  • Dangerous individuals

  • Or even potential workplace hazard mitigation like the correct labeling of chemicals, the proper disposal of hazardous waste, the presence of flammable liquids, etc.

Whispir is currently being utilized in Queensland, with a local government council keeping their community proactively informed about flood conditions and major dam releases in their area. Locals provide their contact and location details, and they receive notifications tailored to their location on the channel of their choice. The community is informed and prepared, ahead of time.

Engaging with the community

There’s no reason why this communications capability shouldn’t also be available for the everyday. Keep locals in the loop about infrastructure works, road closures, and council meetings, plus special events, festivities, and programs in their geographical location.

To ensure things are running smoothly, it makes sense to manage, send, and receive all your communications from one place. That way, you can monitor and track the specific information that's being sent and received for every event.

Whispir can help councils and shires take the appropriate protective measures so they can respond fast to crisis events, keeping everyone safe and informed, while building community engagement.

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