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Shieldel
Member

Posts: 78
Unit: PCR-NV-802

« on: June 16, 2017, 04:47:00 PM »

Some, if not many/most of you know that I was chosen last year to partake in the AmeriCorps National Service FEMA Corps Program. I was honestly pleased this year when I saw it hit my email a few months ago right around the time I saw it last year. As a now senior (I put in for Flight Officer last June shortly before reporting to my duty station for training at the Region HQ) who just recently transferred to a new squadron to take on the ES Officer role, I made sure to bring FEMA Corps up to my cadets and told them about my personal experiences while on disaster. I deployed to Louisiana for the 1,000 Year Flood last year and also was pulled out and reassigned to the coast as my Corps Team was attached to an IMAT, we were immediate Hurricane Matthew Response. One FEMA National IMAT and one Regional IMAT (FEMA Region 6 Team 2, my IMAT) was reassigned from LA to urgently and immediately deploy from LA to the Floridian Coast. From there we went to the Carolinas. Matthew was a Type 1 upon hitting, thus the National IMAT immediately being deployed, they pulled my Regional IMAT from LA for the explicit reason that Region 6 Team 2 had FEMA Corps Junior Personnel assigned to the IMAT, thus more people to throw at the response. So my team augmented the National IMAT.

Enough background (I'm young, 20 - 21 this November, I get passionate with Emergency Management, I want this as a career, so I tend to get enthusiastic and excited I have a bad habit of straying from the point)...

I saw a whole bunch of things I want to point out and layout for discussion:

We (collective we, the CAP organization) say we follow ICS - based on what I saw from the "authors" so to speak (that is FEMA is in charge of the ICS, I know it came from the Fire Service) , CAP in fact, DOES NOT follow the ICS. We have huge gaps where things should be. We have section chiefs, cool - where's say the documentation unit in planning? Resources? CAP at least to my knowledge (within my area) has nothing regarding units and such. Our personnel start with Section Chief. We have A FEW unit leads (Comm is the only one I can think of off the top of my head as I type) CAP needs to do serious work in its structure

When I was in the Corps (FEMA, not the Marines, heh) I was trained as a FEMA Planner. I did not have a "FEMA 101 Card" (does not exist among FEMA Corps, but probably with "Real FEMA"). You do your task book once it's done, you're certified. That's for full employees. We had a 1 week classroom course and then we were certified in our respective areas.  I would imagine they have cards for full employees (FEMA Corps being an internship essentially, we got one thing, that's it), but we got our 1 week course for our FQS with JIT DSA training (all Corps Personnel got DSA training as if SHTF like it did in LA AND Matthew, all hands on deck. They threw TEAMS of Corps Members out on DSA detail first before "Real FEMA") then deployed with our teams. I didn't even get the full DSA training as my "Junior IMAT" was so urgently needed our JIT training was cut short and we met up with our IMAT boots on ground in Louisiana. Point being in this paragraph: We had ONE JOB (insert joke here). I'm still not sure thinking back, if I liked that or not, but something to think about.

This is more of a gripe of FEMA Corps than CAP but I wanted to bring this to the board's attention: On chain of command...
Dear god this got so confusing. So in FEMA Corps you have 2 chains. We all know in CAP doing that DOES. NOT. WORK. I had my AmeriCorps Chain and my FEMA Chain of Command. They really need to do something about probably getting rid of the AmeriCorps chain for the FEMA program. To compound the chain issue: FEMA Corps does not deploy without a "Service Project Request" (paperwork holdover from the "Traditional" AmeriCorps NCCC teams). The SPR has to be routed from FEMA who does the write-up, to AmeriCorps NHQ, to Region HQ, then through Region finally to the team in said region. Well.....when you're on a Corps IMAT team and they say the Junior IMAT will do whatever the IMAT does (be it training drills, actual deployments, whatever), the Junior does, I got VERY VERY Excited. Once I got into the program, this process got clunky....FAST. I almost called AmeriCorps NHQ to give them in service feedback. If I'm on a FEMA Corps IMAT team and I'm supposed to go wherever my IMAT does, we shouldn't have to worry about SPRs. Logically speaking, everybody knows paperwork slows things down dramatically. A FEMA IMAT is an expeditionary team, I keep thinking of them as FEMA's Shock Troops essentially. They're immediate and rapidly-deployable first in, first OR last out response teams. While they are supposed to be for initial response on paper then once FEMA really rolls in they move on to the next disaster, reality is most of the time the IMATs deployed see the assigned disaster through. So if I'm supposed to be on an expeditionary team, to heck with paperwork would be my thing, from a logical standpoint.

A suggestion to CAP ES would be to develop our sections! Let's develop our units and actually give our section chiefs something to do (I know the been there done that crowd, those of you who have been in CAP for forever will probably go "Yeah but we've been doing it like this for forever!" Here me out...). I know we're a volunteer organization but it's really not fair to the section chiefs that they have all the work to do for them (somebody will bring up MSAs to counteract that statement I know...I'm getting to MSAs hang on!). I get we have MSAs but that doesn't beat an actual certified person trained to do the job. I'm actually debating on training some interested cadets in my squadron through MSA, once they're MSA Qualified, I'm going to train them as planners. I'll go off my FEMA Corps Training (I still have my binder!) and show them how to write IAPs, keep the Incident Timeline, the whole 9 yards as a Planner, all units that a planner could possibly be assigned to.

I think that's everything I wanted to cover...if I think of anything more I'll put a line through this and update so people can differentiate from initial posts and lightbulb realizations. Please give me thoughts!

Edited for minor grammar by OP

« Last Edit: June 16, 2017, 04:51:31 PM by Shieldel » Logged
Flight Officer Michael D. Scheidle
Jack Schofield Cadet Squadron
ES Officer
ES Training Officer
FEMA Corps Class 23 Alumni - FEMA-4277-DR-LA Deployment to Baton Rouge FEMA JFO August - October 2016
Spaceman3750
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 2,588

« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2017, 05:18:57 PM »

Some wings are already doing this - training MSAs as tactical search planners, building up RULs, SULs, etc. It's not easy, and CAP doesn't have a framework for it, but some people are trying.
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The moment any commander or staff member considers themselves a gatekeeper, instead of a facilitator, they have failed at their job.
I can't fix all of CAP's problems, but I can lead from the bottom by building my squadron as a center of excellence to serve as an example of what every unit can be.
Shieldel
Member

Posts: 78
Unit: PCR-NV-802

« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2017, 05:30:48 PM »

Some wings are already doing this - training MSAs as tactical search planners, building up RULs, SULs, etc. It's not easy, and CAP doesn't have a framework for it, but some people are trying.
Glad to see some think along the same lines then! I'm frustrated with my wing in all honesty. Not airing dirty laundry here but it seems like our wing staff don't even do outreach or talk to external partners.
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Flight Officer Michael D. Scheidle
Jack Schofield Cadet Squadron
ES Officer
ES Training Officer
FEMA Corps Class 23 Alumni - FEMA-4277-DR-LA Deployment to Baton Rouge FEMA JFO August - October 2016
Eclipse
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Posts: 27,572

« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2017, 06:55:07 PM »

Some, if not many/most of you know that I was chosen last year to partake in the AmeriCorps National Service FEMA Corps Program.


Wow.  Really?  Hadn't heard that...

If your gripe is about FEMA corps, this isn't the place.  CAP has a single chain of command, even when we are working for another agency.

You won't get much dissension about building about sections and non-operator positions, but without a serious recruiting push it's not going to happen.
Most people, especially cadets, don't join CAP to balance the checkbook, watch dots on a map, or setup hots and cots for others to get the "glory".

Plus it takes probably 5 years, if not ten, to build up to many of those section positions, so start recruiting now, figure a less then 50% retention rate,
which means that once you asses how many people you need (based on goals and metrics from NHQ's annual plans), you need to recruit 200% of that number and keep them
for at least 5 years of active membership.
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"Effort" does not equal "results".
The contents of this post are Copyright © 2017 by eclipse. All rights are reserved. Specific permission is given to quote this post here on CAP-Talk only.

Storm Chaser
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 2,663

« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2017, 07:56:31 PM »

We can and do use other ICS positions in CAP such as Documentation, Situation, Resources, and Demobilization Unit Leaders. What we lack (for now) is formal training and qualification for those positions. When used, they're usually filled by other qualified members. I've used them in many of my missions (I'm an IC1). But not every mission requires all ICS positions to be filled. It depends on the size and scope of the incident. ICS is meant to be flexible and can be tailored to the incident or agency, as needed.

That said, I agree we can do a better job at training our members in these and other functions. It would be nice if we had SQTRs, Task Guides, and qualifications for every possible ICS assignment. But just because we don't have a qualification listed on the CAPF 101 Card, it doesn't mean we can't train members in those functions. In fact, we can and should, and in many cases we already do.
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RiverAux
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« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2017, 08:15:21 PM »

CAP in fact, DOES NOT follow the ICS. We have huge gaps where things should be. We have section chiefs, cool - where's say the documentation unit in planning? Resources? CAP at least to my knowledge (within my area) has nothing regarding units and such. Our personnel start with Section Chief.

On most missions we don't need those staff positions, so they are not filled.  Thats a key strongpoint of the ICS system -- you can expand or contract it as needed.  If a Section Chief can handle all the work that would be done by all the positions in that section, then thats all that we need. 

The "typical" CAP missing airplane search doesn't actually need a fully fleshed out ICS to effectively do the job. 

Have I been on missions where we could have used a few more staff people in various positions?  Of course.  But that isn't because we made a conscious choice not to fill them that day, it was an manpower availability issue (that goes back to what Eclipse said).  But that is a very different issue than the broad indictment of CAP that you made as if we don't want to fill needed positions. 
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Eclipse
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« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2017, 08:58:45 PM »

CAP in fact, DOES NOT follow the ICS. We have huge gaps where things should be. We have section chiefs, cool - where's say the documentation unit in planning? Resources? CAP at least to my knowledge (within my area) has nothing regarding units and such. Our personnel start with Section Chief. We have A FEW unit leads (Comm is the only one I can think of off the top of my head as I type) CAP needs to do serious work in its structure...

You might want to channel some of that "enthusiasm" into research before you make assertions about things you clearly don't understand, or
haven't personally experienced.  For starters, the wings which have had incidents large enough to actually need ICS in it's most grand form
are few and far between.

ICS is not a prescription, it's a framework designed to be flexible and manipulated to the needs of the incident, not the other way around.
In fact, trying to be too restrictive in the constitution of a given incident's ICS is a problem, especially in CAP.

There are ICs and program managers who insist that "there must be x, y, & z" despite there being nothing for them to do, so
you wind up with a SAREx scrambling for field personnel because there are no Team Leaders or aircrew available to prosecute a
couple of sorties, while experienced personnel with field quals are sitting in the ICP being those mandated "x, y, & z".

A mission with 2 sorties and 1 airplane does not need an OSC, or probably even an AOBD / GBD to track nonexisitent teams when
you can't find people.

The intention of ICS is to remain as small as possible, which conserves resources for "next", or "parallel" - far too many CAP missions,
and many in other agencies treat a given "thing" as a "one time", when FD and LEOs know they can get the next call on the way home (or sooner).

As a matter of fact, and personal, hands-on experience, CAP uses ICS in many cases more and better then local agencies, because that's all CAP has,
whereas many local agencies have SOPs and traditions that fly in the face of ICS (ask a fireman who is in charge of a fire scene, and see your answers).
A lot of PD & FD ICS training, especially early on (NIMS has only been around since 2004), was to check boxes for grants, forgotten as soon as it was
completed, only to blow the dust off the books when the grant came back up.

The interoperability and coordination NIMS portends exists inconsistently across agencies and jurisdictions, and not at all in some areas due to complex
taxing districts and other non-ES political issues.

For example, I live along a major roadway that runs about 20 miles, and has at least 7 municipalities with their own PD, 2-3 fire districts, and at least 2
major, highly populated (and funded counties).  The cities all practice mutual aid, respond outside their borders daily, and many share the same
dispatch center, however the ability to talk directly between operators or agencies is limited to maybe "one guy on shift with their freqs in his radio".

The ICS in those cases is based on local SOP, tradition, and standard agency and discipline practice, and not necessarily what NIMS says, however that's OK,
because circling back to my original point, ICS is intended to be agency and incident flexible, not set in stone.

At the end of the day, ICS is as much about standardized reporting for IAP, AARs, and grants as it is a day to day hammer.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2017, 10:32:33 PM by Eclipse » Logged

"Effort" does not equal "results".
The contents of this post are Copyright © 2017 by eclipse. All rights are reserved. Specific permission is given to quote this post here on CAP-Talk only.

grunt82abn
Forum Regular

Posts: 176

« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2017, 05:27:30 PM »

CAP in fact, DOES NOT follow the ICS. We have huge gaps where things should be. We have section chiefs, cool - where's say the documentation unit in planning? Resources? CAP at least to my knowledge (within my area) has nothing regarding units and such. Our personnel start with Section Chief. We have A FEW unit leads (Comm is the only one I can think of off the top of my head as I type) CAP needs to do serious work in its structure...

You might want to channel some of that "enthusiasm" into research before you make assertions about things you clearly don't understand, or
haven't personally experienced.  For starters, the wings which have had incidents large enough to actually need ICS in it's most grand form
are few and far between.

ICS is not a prescription, it's a framework designed to be flexible and manipulated to the needs of the incident, not the other way around.
In fact, trying to be too restrictive in the constitution of a given incident's ICS is a problem, especially in CAP.

There are ICs and program managers who insist that "there must be x, y, & z" despite there being nothing for them to do, so
you wind up with a SAREx scrambling for field personnel because there are no Team Leaders or aircrew available to prosecute a
couple of sorties, while experienced personnel with field quals are sitting in the ICP being those mandated "x, y, & z".

A mission with 2 sorties and 1 airplane does not need an OSC, or probably even an AOBD / GBD to track nonexisitent teams when
you can't find people.

The intention of ICS is to remain as small as possible, which conserves resources for "next", or "parallel" - far too many CAP missions,
and many in other agencies treat a given "thing" as a "one time", when FD and LEOs know they can get the next call on the way home (or sooner).

As a matter of fact, and personal, hands-on experience, CAP uses ICS in many cases more and better then local agencies, because that's all CAP has,
whereas many local agencies have SOPs and traditions that fly in the face of ICS (ask a fireman who is in charge of a fire scene, and see your answers).
A lot of PD & FD ICS training, especially early on (NIMS has only been around since 2004), was to check boxes for grants, forgotten as soon as it was
completed, only to blow the dust off the books when the grant came back up.

The interoperability and coordination NIMS portends exists inconsistently across agencies and jurisdictions, and not at all in some areas due to complex
taxing districts and other non-ES political issues.

For example, I live along a major roadway that runs about 20 miles, and has at least 7 municipalities with their own PD, 2-3 fire districts, and at least 2
major, highly populated (and funded counties).  The cities all practice mutual aid, respond outside their borders daily, and many share the same
dispatch center, however the ability to talk directly between operators or agencies is limited to maybe "one guy on shift with their freqs in his radio".

The ICS in those cases is based on local SOP, tradition, and standard agency and discipline practice, and not necessarily what NIMS says, however that's OK,
because circling back to my original point, ICS is intended to be agency and incident flexible, not set in stone.

At the end of the day, ICS is as much about standardized reporting for IAP, AARs, and grants as it is a day to day hammer.
Spot on with ICS being a tool that is set to meet the needs of the Incident, not the Incident meeting the needs of ICS. I have seen IC's try and fill every position and it almost turned disastrous because focus was lost on the task at hand, mitigating the cause. I watched a basic, should have been put out in an hour wild-land fire that gained headway because the focus was all on setting up these positions in ICS that were not needed.


TSGT Sean Riley
IL-042
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Sean Riley, TSGT
US Army 1987 to 1994, WIARNG 1994 to 2008
DoD Firefighter Paramedic 2000 to Present
Panzerbjorn
Seasoned Member

Posts: 261
Unit: MER-NC-048

« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2017, 06:30:12 PM »

My background: 8 years full-time FEMA employee working out of the Region V office, lost count of number of actual Federal Declared disasters deployed to, CAP member and involved in ES since joining about six months before Katrina happened.

Eclipse summed it up pretty beautifully in the post directly above, so I'm not going to parrot what he said.  But one thing does merit repeating, and that is that ICS is designed to be flexible and expandable based upon the resource needs of the incident.

Katrina is really when ICS started showing its importance.  Before Katrina, the basic concepts of ICS were there, but it wasn't formalized, and there really wasn't the concept of a Joint Operations Center (JOC) where you had multiple agencies occupying the same office space.  For most local incidents, it's not really necessary to open up a separate location to establish a JOC.  When I was deployed to Katrina in Jackson, MS, we rented out a vacant 4-floor office building to use as JOC and we filled it to capacity with every Federal and State agency you can think of.  When you have that many agencies, each of whom operate under their own SOPs and Regulations, that's when you need ICS so that everyone knows who to report to and coordinate with.  Remember that each of these agencies, including CAP, have their own Table of Organization that they follow.  ICS simply provides a vehicle in which to efficiently operate.  But again, ICS is designed to be FLEXIBLE and EXPANDABLE based on the needs of the incident.  You can't possibly expect the ICS structure for your Louisiana flood to be the same as what it was for Katrina.

I think it's great that you have such an enthusiasm for Emergency Management, but your experience is definitely limited.  FEMA is not a search and rescue organization, it's a checkbook.  They come in at the request of the Governor after an event, assess the need for Federal funds based on the extent of the damage, begin distributing funds through their R&R programs, and make use of the Mitigation Division to create projects to lessen or eliminate the impact of future events.  That's what FEMA does.  I think it's also great that FEMA found a way to bolster its disaster relief cadre without actually having to pay them....FEMA Corps. 

No, FEMA does not utilize a 101 card type of system.  FEMA employees do not collect qualifications, they are hired to perform a specific job and that is their job.  I was hired to work Mitigation programs in FEMA, so I became a subject matter expert with the HMGP and NFIP programs.  While I gleaned experience and knowledge of how the IA and PA Programs worked, I never was sent off to EMI for training in those programs because that was outside the scope of what I was hired to do.  FEMA has a large pool of Human Resources and can hire more people to fill the personnel needs.  CAP can't do that.  Therefore, people DO collect qualifications in CAP because the personnel need to be versatile to fit the needs of a mission.

One counter-criticism, you're criticizing CAP for not following ICS, but you're breaking a big ICS rule yourself.  You're using terms without defining them.  Here's the list of terms you've used: IMAT, FQS, JIT, DSA, and SPR.  Remember ICS basics?  Common terminology.  Even being a former FEMA full-timer, I had to look some of those up to know what you were talking about.  Practice what you're preaching.  I did the same thing just above throwing out the terms HMGP, NFIP, PA, and IA without defining them with some assumption that you may not have heard of those programs and you might wonder what I was talking about. That's the whole point of ICS, multiple agencies being able to function together with completely different backgrounds, programs, and SOPs.

You also need to realize that FEMA is a CIVILIAN agency, not a military one.  FEMA has no 'shock troops'.  'Expeditionary team'??? Dude, as you said, just because 'Corps' is in your organization title, that doesn't make you a Marine.  FEMA won't even arrive on the scene until a Governor makes a request to the President for Federal involvement.  I can assure you that should another 9/11 happen and they need search and rescue teams to dig through the rubble, they're not going to be calling a FEMA Corps volunteer to do it.  You're going to be called to go in and assess damage by going door to door with a clipboard and collecting information or sitting in a Disaster Recovery Center collecting information from victims.  By the way, that's exactly how CAP is utilized by FEMA in a disaster relief event.  We're there to provide needed information, not dig through rubble.  You want to be a First Responder?  You need to become a firefighter or paramedic, not an Emergency Manager. 

I'm not trying to discourage you or otherwise blow you off, but you really should gain more experience and absorb that knowledge before 'Preaching Gospel' to who you perceive to be sinners.  If it's one thing that you'll learn in Emergency Management it's that every incident is different, very little will ever be standardized, and you have to be completely flexible in how you respond in a Disaster.
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etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 661

« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2017, 08:13:51 PM »

Thanks Panzerbjorn, I really enjoyed reading that.  Enlightening and all very well stated.
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Mitchell 1969
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 616
Unit: PCR-CA-051

« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2017, 04:06:42 AM »

I disagree with the claim about ICS coming into its own starting with Katrina. That may be true for people who never saw it before then, but California (state, not Wing) started using it in the 1970's and it grew from that. The USAir/SkyWest crash of 1991 was a heavy ICS using incident.

Meanwhile, CAP seems to have developed an odd version of ICS. The oddities start with confusing the Incident Commander ICS position with a job qualification and title that lives outside of active incidents. Whenever I hear somebody say "I'm an Incident Commander with CAP" I have to bite my tongue to stop myself from asking where is the incident and why isn't he there, commanding it. In my experience with ICS, the incident creates the need for an IC. When the incident closes, that person is no longer an IC.

The ICS reality is that any incident, planned or unplanned, can have an IC and that person will be the best qualified to deal with it. Rags combust in a hangar? If CAP sees it, responds, calls 911, sets up a perimeter, then that could be an incident as defined by ICS - and there is an IC, whether he has an IC badge or rating or not. Staffing an air show? A perfect event for ICS, but the absence of a "CAP Incident Commander" probably means no way to use ICS - because one can't be an IC as defined in ICS without being a CAP IC - even if an air show staffing doesn't need one and the average CAP IC may not even know how to do that.

CAP, as far as I can tell, has only partially bought into ICS. That's fine, I suppose, if CAP only wants its own system. But if that's the case, CAP really shouldn't call it ICS.

When I see ICS being used by CAP or being referenced by CAP people, I see it as somebody trying to eat soup with a fork. There's a bowl, there's soup, there's an item of cutlery, and the actions are correct - but the tool doesn't fit and, therefore, nobody is actually eating soup. They're just sort of stirring it around while saying "I'm eating soup!"
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Mitchell 1969; Earhart 1971; Eaker 1973. Cadet Flying Encampment, License, 1970. IACE New Zealand 1971; IACE Korea 1973.

CAP has been bery, bery good to me.
sardak
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,125

« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2017, 05:38:18 AM »

You write of wanting  to develop the unit positions as if this were a new idea. CAP hasn’t completely ignored them, look at page 26 of CAPR 60-3, some are listed, with this note “New training programs and levels in certain specialties are currently in development.” That section hasn’t been updated since 2012. So where are they? It’s been my understanding for years that a cabal, accessible only by airboat, is working on them. Are they a priority? It seems not, but we don’t know, so  let’s look at reality.

Incident  complexity is what drives the ICS positions needing to be filled and the size of the staff. I’ve attached a couple of handouts that describe the generally accepted five levels of complexity. Where do CAP missions fall on this scale? Here is the breakdown for 15 months of CAP SAR missions (excluding radar and cell only missions):
711 total missions
57 missing aircraft (8% of the total)
69 missing person (10%)
585 ELT (82%)
There are a smattering of DR missions each year (not included in the 711).

On the complexity scale, ELT missions are Type 5, with some Type 4. Missing person missions might creep into Type 3, but CAP isn’t in charge of those. Type 3 missing aircraft missions are becoming less common.  CAP supports (operative word) Type 1 and 2 disaster missions, so might set up a command post with more staff, but again, we’re a support agency. Of course, the evaluators like to see a full blown ICP and staff at SAREVALs or whatever we’re calling them these days.

So is there a need to develop unit leaders? Mission numbers don’t support it, but as others have mentioned, we have used them, with the positions filled by members with appropriate “training” or “quals”, e.g. a PSC performing situation or resources unit leader duties under the mission PSC.

Moving to training MSAs as “planners.” As a card-carrying, Real World™ PSC, with both wildland fire and all-hazard training (NWCG, FEMA, USCG) and experience, “planners” only exist in FEMA. I can’t order a “planner” to assist with an incident. The FEMA planning specialist training even states it’s for “performing the duties of the Planning Specialist (PLSP) in a Joint Field Office (JFO) Planning Section.” Could the training carry over? Probably.

Whether we should is a different matter. It would be far better to give the training to PSC and ops section trainees. On the topic of formal training, CAP doesn’t seem to believe in that. One can become a CAP Type 1 IC without ever having had any outside emergency management, SAR or DR training, not even the two-day Basic Inland SAR Course taught by AFRCC. If ICs don’t need training, then why would CAP require it of other staff?

Last item, regarding your statement “CAP in fact, DOES NOT follow the ICS.” CAP does follow ICS, perhaps not textbook perfect.

Quote
Katrina is really when ICS started showing its importance.  Before Katrina, the basic concepts of ICS were there, but it wasn't formalized,
Bernie beat me to it. Katrina showed the importance of ICS to the all-hazards world. The fire service had already formalized ICS because it had seen its value decades before.

Mike
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Mordecai
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Posts: 997
Unit: SI

« Reply #12 on: June 19, 2017, 03:08:38 PM »


Last item, regarding your statement “CAP in fact, DOES NOT follow the ICS.” CAP does follow ICS, perhaps not textbook perfect.


If it makes anyone feel better, I've yet to find the agency that thinks their implementation is perfect.
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CAP604
Recruit

Posts: 9

« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2017, 03:11:48 PM »



I'm not trying to discourage you or otherwise blow you off, but you really should gain more experience and absorb that knowledge before 'Preaching Gospel' to who you perceive to be sinners.  If it's one thing that you'll learn in Emergency Management it's that every incident is different, very little will ever be standardized, and you have to be completely flexible in how you respond in a Disaster.

Amen!
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THRAWN
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,767

« Reply #14 on: June 20, 2017, 03:45:02 PM »

If it's one thing that you'll learn in Emergency Management it's that every incident is different, very little will ever be standardized, and you have to be completely flexible in how you respond in a Disaster.

If I had a dime for every time I heard this, or similar advice, I'd have, like, a whole bunch of dimes...

It's like the saying about plans being useless but planning being invaluable. There is always a lot of unknown variables that will be present in an emergency situation. While we do our best to prepare for them all, you need to be flexible in your approach. That's the true beauty of the ICS set up. You have a structure that you can use in whole or in part to meet the needs of your incident.
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Shieldel
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Posts: 78
Unit: PCR-NV-802

« Reply #15 on: June 20, 2017, 04:13:41 PM »

I leave for a few days and come back to WAY too much to reply to (even by quoting!)

I guess I'll chalk my views up to being young and dumb - or at least not knowing enough. I've been trying to get an EM related job since I came home but most require a degree, tried getting into the USAF and was finally denied after 7 months of MEPS and my recruiters office fighting for a waiver. Medical Command kicked the waiver, too much eczema. Oh well. Guess I have to find some other way to pay for school. Don't make enough to even save up. So alas, such to being young. Hate the situation but I'll get through it.

Thanks for everybody's views. It's really nice to see all the different posts now, gives me a lot to think on
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Flight Officer Michael D. Scheidle
Jack Schofield Cadet Squadron
ES Officer
ES Training Officer
FEMA Corps Class 23 Alumni - FEMA-4277-DR-LA Deployment to Baton Rouge FEMA JFO August - October 2016
Panzerbjorn
Seasoned Member

Posts: 261
Unit: MER-NC-048

« Reply #16 on: June 20, 2017, 05:21:30 PM »

Your enthusiasm is no different than anyone who has gotten a taste of disaster relief life and liked it.

My suggestion is to make use of that FEMA Corps experience you've obtained and apply for a Disaster Assistance Employee position with FEMA.  When I left, they were culling the DAE herd to streamline it, but I left shortly after Katrina.  Their cadre and needs may have changed significantly since.  Start familiarizing yourself with the programs that FEMA manages: Public Assistance (PA), Individual Assistance (IA), Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP), National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA), etc.  Becoming a DAE will at least get your foot in the door to making a career in Emergency Management.

You don't have to limit yourself to FEMA either if you like being part of the Federal Disaster deployment life.  Small Business Administration always deploys teams to the field as FEMA programs don't directly help small businesses.  US Forestry sends teams out to the field, as does pretty much any Federal Agency depending upon the type of Disaster.  You could also try American Red Cross.

It also sounds to me that being on the tip of the spear and First Responding is more up your alley.  You may want to consider a seasonal job with the Forestry Service Hand Crew, which would set you up to get on a Hotshot Crew.

If you go after a degree, do yourself a favor and DON'T get a degree in Emergency Management.  You just don't need one, and whatever agency picks you up will send you to all the Emergency Management specific training you need.  Having a more general degree like Biology, Business, Forestry, etc. gives you options.  There are not many EM jobs out there.  I know one person who got herself a Bachelor's and Masters degree in Emergency Management, it took her over a year of constant job searching even with Veteran status, and the job she got finally didn't require the specialized degrees she went after.  She is not alone in the slightest bit in that experience.  EM is a difficult career path to get into.

Best of luck to you!
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Shieldel
Member

Posts: 78
Unit: PCR-NV-802

« Reply #17 on: June 20, 2017, 06:14:58 PM »

Your enthusiasm is no different than anyone who has gotten a taste of disaster relief life and liked it.

My suggestion is to make use of that FEMA Corps experience you've obtained and apply for a Disaster Assistance Employee position with FEMA.  When I left, they were culling the DAE herd to streamline it, but I left shortly after Katrina.  Their cadre and needs may have changed significantly since.  Start familiarizing yourself with the programs that FEMA manages: Public Assistance (PA), Individual Assistance (IA), Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP), National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), Hazard Mitigation Assistance (HMA), etc.  Becoming a DAE will at least get your foot in the door to making a career in Emergency Management.

You don't have to limit yourself to FEMA either if you like being part of the Federal Disaster deployment life.  Small Business Administration always deploys teams to the field as FEMA programs don't directly help small businesses.  US Forestry sends teams out to the field, as does pretty much any Federal Agency depending upon the type of Disaster.  You could also try American Red Cross.

It also sounds to me that being on the tip of the spear and First Responding is more up your alley.  You may want to consider a seasonal job with the Forestry Service Hand Crew, which would set you up to get on a Hotshot Crew.

If you go after a degree, do yourself a favor and DON'T get a degree in Emergency Management.  You just don't need one, and whatever agency picks you up will send you to all the Emergency Management specific training you need.  Having a more general degree like Biology, Business, Forestry, etc. gives you options.  There are not many EM jobs out there.  I know one person who got herself a Bachelor's and Masters degree in Emergency Management, it took her over a year of constant job searching even with Veteran status, and the job she got finally didn't require the specialized degrees she went after.  She is not alone in the slightest bit in that experience.  EM is a difficult career path to get into.

Best of luck to you!

Tip of the spear is definitely more me I think sir. Thanks for giving me an avenue to explore. I think I remember you congratulating me on getitng picked for FEMA Corps last year. I seriously do appreciate everybody who's given me even negative feedback in this thread as yes, I'm enthusiastic. People at my squadron will tell you I seem like I'm 5 when I talk ES/EM. I love the work, I love the chaos. I find it so fascinating. There's just so much to it. What with all the different ways one can attack an incident, and even different types of incidents themselves. Of course there's all the different programs like you mentioned, and that's a whole other beast. When I worked as a planner in FEMA Corps they gave us the basics on all programs, because you don't know if you'll be working as a planner in the planning section or say attached to IA as their planner for IAP Purposes or record keeping.

I think part of the whole being 5 thing came out in the initial post (expeditionary and all the other words people have pointed out), yeah I like being at the tip, only because that's the most chaotic, I like being in fast paced environments. When I've gone for a job, I always tell my employer I thrive in chaos. Put me in the most chaotic position possible, I like having to be quick on my feet and thinking a million miles an hour.

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Flight Officer Michael D. Scheidle
Jack Schofield Cadet Squadron
ES Officer
ES Training Officer
FEMA Corps Class 23 Alumni - FEMA-4277-DR-LA Deployment to Baton Rouge FEMA JFO August - October 2016
UWONGO2
Member

Posts: 77

« Reply #18 on: June 20, 2017, 07:39:35 PM »

Far too often in CAP I've seen the mission become the mission of running the mission, instead of you know, our mission. Everyone gets so wrapped around the axel about job descriptions and filling squares on charts that we barely get anyone out the door to go look for whatever we're looking for.

We certainly have a lot of learning to do about ICS (and changes to how we do business if we want to do ICS with others), but we need to stop making ICS the mission.
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THRAWN
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,767

« Reply #19 on: June 20, 2017, 08:11:49 PM »

Far too often in CAP I've seen the mission become the mission of running the mission, instead of you know, our mission. Everyone gets so wrapped around the axel about job descriptions and filling squares on charts that we barely get anyone out the door to go look for whatever we're looking for.

We certainly have a lot of learning to do about ICS (and changes to how we do business if we want to do ICS with others), but we need to stop making ICS the mission.

We've been using ICS for over 15 years. At this point in the game, we should be more proficient.
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Strup
"Belligerent....at times...."
AFRCC SMC 10-97
NSS ISC 05-00
USAF SOS 2000
USAF ACSC 2011
US NWC 2016
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CAP Talk  |  Operations  |  Emergency Services & Operations  |  Topic: Constructive Criticism of CAP's ES Program
 


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