Iowa law requires child care providers to have a written emergency plan in place by October 1, 2016. Emergency plans must include procedures for:
- Evacuation and relocation
- Addressing the individual needs of children, including those with functional or access needs
- Communication and reunification with parents and other approved individuals
- Continuity of operations
There are templates and tools available for child care providers to help meet your program's needs. You are not required to use any of the templates and tools offered, although the tools and templates will help you meet requirements in Iowa law.
- EP Planning Template in Adobe Acrobat fillable format (download & save to use) - blank document
- EP Planning Template in Word format (download & save to use) - blank document
A few suggestions to keep in mind as you develop the emergency plan for your program:
- Keep your plan simple so you and your staff can remember the important steps to do when an emergency happens.
- Keep your plan in a place where it is available to reference.
- Train on and practice your plan to everyone knows what needs to be done. You and your staff's actions should be instinctive and decisive.
- Update your plan at least annually. Make necessary changes after conducting drills or an actual event.
Links to Healthy Child Care Iowa Forms:
Reunifying children with their families:
- The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children reunification system is a 24-hour hotline. 1-800-THE-LOST (1-800-843-5678)/TTY 1-800-826-7653 or www.misskids.com
- The Unaccompanied Minors Registry (UMR) is a tool for reporting children who have been separated from their parents or legal guardians as a result of a disaster - www.missingkids.com/DisasterResponse
- The National Emergency Child Locator Center (NECLC) is activated immediately after a Presidentially-declared disaster. 1-866-908-9572 or https://egateway.fema.gov/inter/nefrls/home.htm
General Emergency Preparedness:
- American Red Cross - www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster-safety-library
- Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) - www.fema.gov and www.ready.gov/
- Iowa County Emergency Management Coordinators - homelandsecurity.iowa.gov/county_EM/county_EM_overview.html
- Iowa Department of Public Health Environmental Health Response Team - http://www.idph.iowa.gov/Environmental-Health-Services/Emergency-Preparedness
- Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management - www.homelandsecurity.iowa.gov/about_HSEMD/alert_iowa.html
- Iowa State University Extension & Outreach www.extension.iastate.edu/disasterrecovery/
- Child Care Aware - http://childcareaware.org/providers/planning-for-success/developing-your-policies-and-procedures/
- Child Care Resource and Referral - http://iowaccrr.org/
- Department of Human Services - http://dhs.iowa.gov/ or http://ccmis.dhs.state.ia.us/providerportal/
- Healthy Child Care Iowa - www.idph.iowa.gov/hcci
- Emergency Preparedness, U.S. Small Business Administration - http://www.sba.gov/prepare
- Preparedness Planning for Your Business, Ready.gov - http://ready.gov/business
- Ready Rating Resource Center offers forms and materials to help in emergency planning - http://www.readyrating.org/Resource-Center/agenttype/viewtype/resourcetypeid/2/type1/plan
Trauma and Emotional Support:
- Camp Noah - http://www.lssmn.org/camp_noah/
- Coping with Disasters, Violence, and Tragedies. National Association for the Education of Young Children - http://www.naeyc.org/content/disasters-and-tragedies
- Greenman, J. (2005). “What Happened to MY World?: Helping Children Cope with Natural Disaster and Catastrophe.” - http://www.brighthorizons.com/resources/pdf/talktochildren/docs/What_Happened_to_MY_World.pdf
- National Mental Health Information Center - www.mentalhealth.gov
- The National Child Traumatic Stress Network - http://www.nctsn.org/trauma-types/natural-disasters
- Sesame Street - https://www.sesamestreet.org/toolkits/ready