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News Release

Friday, August 27, 2004
Contact: Eldon Girdner
Tel: 202-606-2402

OPM Director James Releases Updated Emergency Guides for Federal Employees, Managers

James encourages Agency Heads to work with Employees, Employee Representatives to prepare for potential emergencies

530,000 Downloaded Since First Released

Washington, D.C.- The Office of Personnel Management Director Kay Coles James announced the release of updated emergency guides for Federal employees and managers that further spell out the responsibilities of Federal agencies and options available to prepare for an emergency event.

OPM Director Kay Coles James stated, "Federal employees, their representatives, and managers play a critical role in the security of the Nation and the readiness of the Federal government to respond to potential emergencies. These guides, containing updated information, ensure that Federal workers are fully prepared within their own facilities. As we approach National Preparedness Month, I encourage employees to download the new guides and re-familiarize themselves with safety protocols."

The two updated emergency guides now provide guidance on telework arrangements, designation of emergency personnel and shelter in place protocols. In addition to the guides for Federal employees and managers, OPM also produced a national and DC-specific emergency preparedness guide for families. The emergency guides can be found at the web address,

The first emergency guides, which were downloaded more than 530,000 times since they were released in March 2003, provided direction to Federal employees and managers on general steps they can take to protect themselves from a potential biological, chemical, or radiological event and spelled out the responsibilities of the Federal Government and individual agencies to protect employees.

Each Federal facility has unique factors which affect the security measures that should be taken to protect employees, and the Federal Manager's/Decision Maker's Guide provides guidance on measures many agencies have already put into place. General information is provided on practical steps that can be taken to mitigate harm in the event of an emergency, as well as a list of actions employees and managers can take prior to, during and after an attack.

The Federal Employee's Emergency Guide provides general information on biological, chemical and radiological risks and what can be done to prepare for an emergency event involving these substances.

The guides provided a basis for seven emergency preparedness seminars OPM conducted to train 595 emergency professionals from 130 federal agencies, components, and State and local officials. Seminars were conducted in Washington, DC, Boston and New York City.

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OPM leads and serves the Federal Government in enterprise human resources management by delivering policies and services to achieve a trusted, effective civilian workforce. By Empowering Excellence in Government through Great People, we provide leadership and support to U.S. agencies on issues including human resources policy and oversight, background investigations, federal employee benefits, retirement services, guidance on labor-management relations, and programs to improve workforce performance. For more information, visit or follow OPM on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.

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