Texas Emergency Management ONLINE 2014 Vol. 61 No. 10

Texas Emergency Management Briefs, Tips and Links

October is National Cyber Security Awareness Month

Smoke alarm

The Internet is part of everyone’s life, every day. We use the Internet at work, home, for enjoyment, and to connect with those close to us.

However, being constantly connected brings increased risk of theft, fraud, and abuse. No country, industry, community, or individual is immune to cyber risks. As a nation, we face constant cyber threats against our critical infrastructure and economy. As individuals, cybersecurity risks can threaten our finances, identity, and privacy. Since our way of life depends on critical infrastructure and the digital technology that operates it, cybersecurity is one of our country’s most important national security priorities, and we each have a role to play—cybersecurity is a shared responsibility.

For more information, check out the Department of Homeland Security 2014 NCSA page.

Flu Season
CDC has published the 2014-2015 recommendations for the prevention and control of influenza. CDC recommends an annual flu vaccine for everyone 6 months of age and older. Flu activity is low across the United States now, but usually begins to increase in October and most commonly peaks between January and March. Make plans to get your flu vaccine this fall.

Centers for Disease Control flu page.
Texas Department of State Health Services flu page.

Fire Prevention Week – October 5 – 11, 2014

Smoke alarm

Did you know that many people don’t test their smoke alarms as often as they should? When there is a fire, smoke spreads fast. You need working smoke alarms to give you time to get out. Test yours every month!

Fire Prevention Week was established to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire, the tragic 1871 conflagration that killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures and burned more than 2,000 acres. The fire began on October 8, but continued into and did most of its damage on October 9, 1871.

Nine decades of fire prevention
Those who survived the Chicago and Peshtigo fires never forgot what they'd been through; both blazes produced countless tales of bravery and heroism. But the fires also changed the way that firefighters and public officials thought about fire safety. On the 40th anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire, the Fire Marshals Association of North America (today known as the International Fire Marshals Association), decided that the anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire should henceforth be observed not with festivities, but in a way that would keep the public informed about the importance of fire prevention.  The commemoration grew incrementally official over the years.
National Fire Protection Association

Americorps/One Star Foundation
On September 12, 2014, a new class of Texas AmeriCorps members pledged to "get things done for America" as part of a nationwide ceremony marking AmeriCorps' 20th Anniversary (#americorps20). This year's ceremony was an extra-special milestone, as it also celebrated the 10th Anniversary of Texas' state service commission for AmeriCorps, OneStar Foundation. OneStar hosted the event -- the largest of its kind in Texas history -- at the University of Texas at Austin's historic Lyndon B. Johnson Auditorium and Presidential Library and Museum.

Speakers at the event included Mark Updegrove, LBJ Presidential Library Director; Randi Shade, Founding Executive Director, Texas Commission on Volunteering & Community Service/former Austin City Council Member; and Rosie Mauk, Former Director of AmeriCorps among others.

President Obama, who was joined by former Presidents Bill Clinton and George H. W. Bush, led the nationwide ceremony and give remarks to AmeriCorps members from the White House, which was live-streamed by the Corporation for National and Community Service in Washington, D.C. and other state commissions across the country.

AmeriCorps' Role in Texas
Since 1994, more than 46,265 Texas residents have served in AmeriCorps, providing more than 61,114,400 hours of service. They have earned education scholarships totaling more than $129,885,900 to help pay for college or pay back student loans and made vital contributions in the fields of Education, Environment, Disaster Services, Health, Nonprofit Capacity Building and more.

Taylor Ellison

Taylor Ellison, former OneStar Youth Commissioner and Americorps alum emcees the event

Taking the pledge

Taking the pledge

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