This annex provides for the protection of the population
from the effects of hazards through the identification
of shelters and provision of mass care and social
services in shelters.
SITUATION AND ASSUMPTIONS
Based upon the county's hazard analysis, there are
several emergencies for which shelters may be required
including severe storms, tornadoes, floods, hazardous
material accidents, and fires.
The Gaston County Office of Emergency Management and the
American Red Cross have identified and surveyed
potential shelters in the county and have determined
which would be appropriate to use during disasters. The
Gaston County Office of Emergency Management maintains a
list of potential shelter sites.
Sufficient in-county sheltering exists to meet the needs
of an evacuation during emergencies or disaster.
For out-of-county evacuation, sufficient shelter
capacity exists and shelter locations can be arranged
and made available.
A high percentage of evacuees will seek shelter with
friends or relatives rather than go to public shelter.
Within the National Response Framework, shelter and mass
care is an Emergency Support Function (ESF-6)
and incorporates mass care, emergency assistance,
disaster housing and human services.
CONCEPT OF OPERATIONS
The North Carolina Department of Human Resources through
the NC Division of Social Services (NCDSS) and the
Gaston County Department of Social Services (County DSS)
is responsible for shelter and mass care matters. The
American Red Cross (ARC) through written agreement with
the State of North Carolina and the Gaston County Office of
Emergency Management under
NC General Statute 166A-9
will provide shelter and mass care to the general
population. The Department of Human Resources will
assure that shelter care is made available to complement
American Red Cross services, and in those situations in
which American Red Cross cannot provide shelter and mass
The Department of Human Resources (DHR) will support
county social services efforts, arrange for shelters at
DHR institutions, and transfer social services personnel
to the affected area as needed. DHR will work in
conjunction with the American Red Cross, Salvation Army
and other volunteer organizations to provide care for
The Gaston County
Administrator and the
American Red Cross will coordinate
shelter locations. Operations will mutually be supported
with shared personnel and support services of American
Red Cross and Gaston County Department of Social
Services whenever possible.
Public and private providers of institutional care
(medical and residential) remain responsible for having
shelter plans, which are approved by Gaston County
Social Services and the Emergency Management Office, for
continued care of their clientele when in shelters.
The Gaston County
Director of Social Services is
responsible to ensure sheltering of populations with
special needs that make them ineligible to reside in
general population shelters as prescribed by the
American Red Cross.
The Gaston County Health Director is responsible for
ensuring nursing coverage is identified for local
shelters as needed.
DIRECTION AND CONTROL
The Director of Social Services will coordinate with
American Red Cross on shelter/mass care operations for
The American Red Cross will direct and control ARC
shelter/mass care operations in conjunction with Gaston
County Social Services.
Assumption of financial responsibility dictates
direction and control.
CONTINUITY OF GOVERNMENT
The line of succession for shelter and mass care is:
This annex provides for the protection of the
special needs groups in the general population from the
effects of hazards through the identification of special
needs shelters. Gaston County will attempt within all means possible to accommodate the provisions of the American with Disability Acts.
SITUATION AND ASSUMPTIONS
Gaston County has within the general population, special
needs individuals and special needs groups that will
require individual and/or special assistance in the
event evacuation is required.
Some persons with special needs may, with minimal
assistance, be able to function in a mass care shelter,
while those persons with special health needs requiring
constant care and/or life support systems will require
a special needs shelter or a medical facility.
Any person with special needs for whose care can be
provided by that person or by family members should be
accepted in the shelter serving his family and his
Sheltering for special needs will be unique to the
county and the special needs shelter may be in a
separate designated area of a building housing a mass
care shelter or in a separate facility depending on the
resources available in the county.
Private and government operated residential facilities
caring for special needs groups, such as nursing homes,
rest homes, group homes for the mentally ill or
developmentally disabled, etc., are responsible for
their clients continual care during and after the time
an evacuation is authorized to include financial
Private and government operated facilities caring for
special needs groups for less than 24 hours, such as day
care, pre-school, and day health, are responsible for their
clients continual care during and after an evacuation is
authorized until or unless the client is released to a
parent or a responsible adult.
CONCEPT OF OPERATIONS
Sheltering for special needs populations will be
accomplished through the coordinated efforts of private
facilities, governmental agencies, and county-to-county
mutual aid agreements.
The Department of Human Resources (DHR) has lead
responsibility for sheltering and mass care in North
Carolina. Within DHR, the Division of Social Services (DSS),
and Gaston County Department of Social Services (County
DSS) are designated as the lead agencies to ensure that
shelter care is provided for special needs groups. This
will involve team planning for special needs shelters
with public agencies, private facilities, and the
The local Emergency Management Administrator will assist
County DSS and other local agencies with issues related
to special needs sheltering, including coordination of
operation of special needs shelters when a publicly
operated special needs shelter is necessary.
Divisions under the Department of Human Resources that
operate residential facilities are required to have
current plans in place for the evacuation and sheltering
of special needs populations. Any (residential) facility
for local groups must have prior approval of DHR.
Private facilities will be responsible for the
evacuation and sheltering of their patients, to include
transport to and from shelters.
Sheltering needs of special needs groups may be met in
the county, if an appropriate facility is available; in
adjoining counties with prior approval from DHR in
certain DHR state operated facilities; or, in shelters
administered by county departments of social services.
The Gaston County Health Department is responsible for
staffing special needs shelters when activated.
Private facilities will be responsible for direction and
control of their shelters, or if housed in government-provided space for their clients subject to overall
direction and control of the public shelter operator.
Department of Human Resources will provide direction and
control for agency facilities.
CONTINUITY OF GOVERNMENT
The line of succession for special needs shelter and
Pack personal items: clothes,
toilet items, medications, blanket, phone
Pick up shelter manager's
Establish contact with
facility representatives and activate the
building when ready. IF clients are waiting the
facility may have to be partially activated
Using the Statement of
Agreement and Facility Survey, if they
already exist, meet the facility representative
for a pre-occupancy inspection. Negotiate and
sign a Facility Agreement. Conduct
pre-occupancy inspection using
Self-Inspection Worksheet Off-premises Liability
Checklist, and assess the general condition
of the facility, citing pre-existing damage.
Establish and maintain
contact with the Red Cross /department/agency
supervisory unit or the Emergency Operations
Survey and lay out the space plan for the
Organize and brief staff.
Assign staff to perform the following tasks:
Disaster Health Services
Disaster Mental Health Services
Staff Recruitment and Placement
Other client services
Public information (coordinated with
the EOC Public Information Officer)
phones are out) (i.e. Amateur Radio
Project staffing and other
support requirements for the next 48 hours.
Notify the chapter/department/agency.
Order start-up supplies and
equipment and request any support needed such as
security, Amateur Radio operators, Public
Information or Disaster Health Services
Coordinate recruitment of
additional personnel. Encourage the involvement
of shelter residents as workers.
Assess feeding options and
discuss recommended solution with supervisor.
Meet with Food Services supervisor.
Establish a shelter log
Put up shelter identification
both inside and out.
Ensure that the Disaster Welfare Inquiry and
Family Service copies of shelter registration
forms are forwarded to headquarters.
communications with the shelter coordinator or
supervisor. Provide Shelter Daily Report
information, and discuss supply needs, problems
Establish and meet regularly
with the shelter advisory committee, and ensure
that the physical and mental needs of clients
are being met. Develop plans to meet these needs
and request assistance if necessary.
Ensure that shelter residents
are receiving updated information about the
disaster, the recovery process, and all of the
resources available to them.
Forward a copy of new
registrations to Disaster Welfare Inquiry and
Family Service units daily.
Establish standard shift
schedules for staff, usually for 9 to 13 hours.
Conduct staff meetings.
Include updates on disaster response and shelter
operations, directions and advice from disaster
headquarters, and status of problems and
resolutions. Identify needs for clients, staff,
supplies, and systems. Address rumors.
Monitor disaster response
efforts, and plan for the closing of the
Ensure that the proper
systems are in place to track expenditures,
bills and invoices, materials, and local
Develop plans for maintaining
the shelter until closing is possible, including
staffing and supply needs.
Routinely inspect the safety
and sanitation of the facility, including the
kitchen, dormitories, bathrooms, exterior and
registration area and ensure that health
standards and clients' needs are being met.
Meet regularly with the
facility representative to share concerns and
resolve potential problems.
Work with the clients and
feeding supervisor to ensure the appropriate
menus are being planned that reflect the
preferences of the shelter population.
Coordinate plans to close the
shelter with your supervisor and community well
in advance of the actual closing.
Coordinate with Family
Service to ensure timely and appropriate
placement of all remaining shelter occupants.
Communicate to any remaining
shelter residents the plan for closing the
shelter. Encourage individuals who have not
already contacted Family Service to do so.
Consult with your supervisor
about the disposition of all Red Cross and USDA
Ensure Logistics staff take
the following actions:
Complete the inventory of all supplies
owned by the facility that were used in
the shelter, and forward this to your
Return all rented or borrowed equipment
to owners. Send your supervisor signed
receipts for such equipment.
Arrange for the
cleaning of the facility and have it
returned to the pre-occupancy condition
or as close to the pre-occupancy
condition as possible.
Return all Red Cross supplies and
equipment to the
chapter/department/agency or central
storage facility. Submit to your
supervisor a list of items returned.
Forward all pending financial
commitments to the supervisor for
payment. Ask suppliers to send final
bills to your supervisor.
Consult with the supervisor
about transfer or release of staff.
Remove all Red Cross / DSS ID
materials from the facility.
Prepare a thank-you list of
other voluntary organizations, vendors, and
staff to be thanked or recognized.
Forward all Mass Care shelter
files to the chapter/department/agency.