What We're Talking About This Week - March 20th

Picture of Mary Kate McGrath By Mary Kate McGrath

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In the News 

Governor Gavin Newsom ordered all 40 Californians to stay at home, one of the most drastic steps to stop the spread of the coronavirus in the United States. Campus Safety Magazine wrote about vigilance and campus security during the coronavirus outbreak, looking at how one district managed security during a closure. Meanwhile, EHS Today posted a guide for workers to keep mentally healthy during the COVID-19 outbreak. As cities respond to coronavirus data chiefs can play a huge role, assisting policymaking and emergency response. 

Key Points: 

  • Big cities like Seattle and New York are at the center of the new coronavirus outbreak because of their high population densities, which helps the virus spread faster. But lots of people also means lots of data, and government’s chief data officers have important roles to play in making government more efficient during emergencies. 
  • Figuring out which neighborhoods are hotspots and tracing the steps of people who test positive is a job that the city’s roster of open data coordinators could help with
  • Many cities have open data portals that collect and publicize traffic, environmental and 311 data on a regular basis, but not usually in real time, which would be beneficial during a fast-moving crisis like the coronavirus pandemic. 
  • When people feel comfortable gathering in public spaces again, chief data officers could also assist economic recovery efforts as they narrow down which neighborhoods and businesses were hit the hardest. 

This Week From The Rave Team 

Read some of the stories our writers were most excited to share with you this week. To access all of our stories, check out our blog

How College Campuses Are Responding To The Coronavirus Outbreak

coronavirusOn Tuesday, Harvard joined the growing number of colleges and universities canceling in-person classes and moving to a remote learning model amid escalating concerns about the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the United States. Following Spring Break, scheduled for the next week, students were asked to leave on-campus housing and treat the departure as if it were the end of the year, according to AXIOS. Harvard has nearly 7,000 students, 98% of which live on campus, raising questions for students who are unable to travel - such as poor or international students - as well as logistical concerns of moving classes online. But higher education institutions like Harvard taking swift action, despite concerns, is essential. College or university campuses are high-risk for virus transmission, as large groups of people live and work in close quarters.

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March is American Red Cross Month

American Red CrossFor more than 75 years, U.S. Presidents have declared the month of March as Red Cross Month. The annual tradition was started by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1943 and has continued since. The American Red Cross feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters, supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood, teaches skills that save lives, provides international humanitarian aid, and supports military members and their families.

It is clear that the American Red Cross benefits our country in numerous ways. Through the work of volunteers, communities that have faced disasters are afforded some semblance of relief in their times of need. 

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What Does an Emergency Management Coordinator Do?

emergency management coordinator planBehind the scenes, emergency management professionals work diligently to prepare for, prevent, and mitigate disasters and emergencies for institutions such as municipalities, government agencies, and more. Many residents of a town or city don’t fully understand the hard work that goes in to keeping a community safe. Emergency management coordinators have a lot of responsibility and must exhibit a wide range of skills and abilities to get the job done right.So, let’s break down the responsibilities of an emergency management coordinator.

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Rave In The News

Across the United States, towns, cities, and municipalities began to roll-out drive-through testing. In Suffolk County, New York City, the first drive-thru testing site opened at Stony Brook University on Wednesday. Rep. Lee Zeldin, a member of the Congressional bipartisan coronavirus task force, visited the site, which is free and features six lanes. The site will be open 7 days a week from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Bellone also urged residents to sign up for Smart911, to help provide critical medical information to first responders. In addition, along with calling 311 with questions, residents could sign up for updates by texting "COVIDSUFFOLK" to 67283.

Read the whole story here

Mary Kate McGrath

Written by Mary Kate McGrath

Mary Kate is a content specialist and social media manager for the Rave Mobile Safety team. She writes about public safety for the state & local and education spheres.

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