Emergency Communication Specialist Guidelines

Priesthood leaders may call a welfare specialist to assist in identifying and analyzing the best mode(s) of backup communication and to provide communications support in emergencies. The specialist should have the knowledge and experience required to evaluate communication needs and recommend a practical solution to leaders. The communication specialist has the following responsibilities:

  1. Functions under the direction of a priesthood leader to ensure that he can communicate with Church leaders within the stake or ward and with local civil authorities (who in turn provide reports to the Area Seventy or Church headquarters).
  2. Recommends backup mode(s) of communication that will work most effectively.
  3. Develops the emergency communications part of the emergency preparedness and response plan.
  4. Develops and practices communications exercises with local Church leaders.
  5. Becomes familiar with Church policies on local unit purchasing of communication equipment, staging of mock disasters, and use of Church meetinghouses.
  6. Learns of the emergency communication plans of the county, city, Red Cross, and VOAD.
  7. Maintains an up-to-date list of contacts for Church and community leaders.
  8. Develops relationships with other Church emergency communication specialists and community communication experts to coordinate emergency communications. This may include supporting each other during an actual emergency.
  9. Prepares to serve in a disaster event, taking into consideration personal and family circumstances.
  10. Plans to serve at the side of the priesthood leaders to ensure effective communications during a disaster.
  11. Monitors and assesses communication options during the disaster. Helps Church leaders use the most familiar method that will be effective during an emergency.