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Florida ARES, State of Florida Considering Memorandum of Understanding

04/02/2019

Amateur Radio Emergency Services (ARES®) Section Emergency Coordinators (SEC) from the ARRL Northern, West Central, and Southern Florida sections met recently with state Emergency Management Communication leaders to discuss improved integration of Amateur Radio during emergencies.

A draft Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between ARES and the State of Florida was presented for further consideration. If agreed upon, the MOU would make ARES and Amateur Radio a valid resource that can be easily requested during an incident.

“For the first time ARES will be integrated into the state communication team,” said West Central Florida Section Emergency Coordinator (SEC) Ben Henley, KI4IGX. To facilitate deployment of communication resources more effectively, the three Sections have previously agreed to work as a single entity during an incident. Also discussed was the necessity of changing the way ARES volunteers are credentialed, trained, and deployed.

“This is a team effort,” said Northern Florida SEC Karl Martin, KG4HBN. SECs and state leaders anticipate working together in the future to overcome shortcomings in disaster and emergency preparation to ensure an effective response when Amateur Radio support is requested. 



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