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DHS Encourages Americans to Resolve to be Ready in 2008


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The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) reminds Americans that the New Year is a perfect time to Resolve to be Ready. The department’s Ready Campaign has outlined the top 10 items for a basic emergency supply kit so that every American can keep their preparedness resolutions next year.

“We cannot stress enough the importance of being prepared for all types of emergencies, from natural disasters to terrorist attacks,” said Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. “Having a plan can make all the difference, as the recent flooding and ice storms across the country have shown. The time for individuals, families and businesses to plan is now, and to resolve to make readiness a priority for 2008.”

Keeping New Year’s resolutions is challenging, but making resolutions that are simple and realistic is the key to success. Americans can successfully prepare for emergencies by following the Ready Campaign’s three easy steps:

Prepare an emergency supply kit;
Make a family emergency plan; and
Be informed about the kinds of emergencies that can happen in your area and their appropriate responses.

To help get started, the Ready Campaign is issuing a checklist of the leading items needed in a basic emergency supply kit for the home or business. These items include: water, food, radio, flashlight, first-aid kit, whistle, moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties, wrench or pliers, local maps, and personal items.

For the complete list of items the Ready Campaign recommends including in your emergency kit, visit theReady Campaign Web site at or call 1-800-BE-READY. Ready also suggests creating a smaller, portable kit for your home or office in case you need to evacuate immediately. The Web site includes free information, checklists and guidelines about the two other key components of preparedness – developing a family emergency plan and being informed.

DHS reminds Americans to get involved in neighborhood and community preparedness efforts once their families are prepared. A good way to start is by reaching out to a local Citizen Corps Council to learn about hands-on training and opportunities to get involved with a local organization. For more information, visit

DHS promotes individual emergency preparedness through the Ready Campaign and Citizen Corps as part of a broader national effort conducted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Ready is a national public service advertising campaign produced by The Advertising Council in partnership with DHS. The Ready Campaign is designed to educate and empower Americans to prepare for and respond to emergencies, including natural disasters and potential terrorist attacks. Individuals interested in more information about family and business preparedness can visit or call 1-800-BE-READY to receive free materials. Citizen Corps, DHS’ grassroots effort, localizes preparedness messages and provides opportunities for citizens to get emergency response training; participate in community exercises; and volunteer to support local first responders. To learn more and to get involved, contact your nearest Citizen Corps Council by visiting


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