Wha is your 'readiness quotient?'
If a disaster struck today, would you, your family or your organization be ready?
Would you know how to communicate with your loved ones? Would you know how to obtain the latest information from state or local authorities? If you are like the majority of Americans, you know that preparing for disaster and other emergencies makes sense, but you may not know what specific actions you need to take to get prepared.
Now there is a simple, free online survey tool designed to help you prepare http://www.whatsyourRQ.org> . The survey is composed of 10 questions that will assess your level of preparedness - Your "RQ" score. Once you learn your score, you are automatically given a list of things to do to become better prepared.
How the RQ was developed
The 10 simple questions on the RQ survey are the most predictive of an individual’s preparedness for a weather emergency, natural disaster or terrorist attack. The RQ test was developed with the support of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
Over a two-year period, the council worked with an array of stakeholders, including first responders, academics, elected and appointed officials, private-sector partners and experts from the emergency management community to develop the survey tool. Key partners in this effort were The American Red Cross, Ready.gov, Citizens Corps and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Communities, businesses and schools
The RQ survey is designed not only to help individuals assess their preparedness, but local government, business and community groups as well. The RQ survey allows organizations to collect and retrieve preparedness data specific to their population; obtain a benchmark score that they can use to address gaps; plan education and training; and track progress over time.
Communities can include a link to the RQ survey on their home page so that citizens can assess their readiness quotient. For example, both the New York City Office of Emergency Management and the Harris County (Houston, TX) Citizen Corps link to the site.
Local community groups can administer the RQ survey to find out how prepared their citizens are.
Businesses can administer the RQ survey to their employees, determine baseline scores and design training programs and collateral material to help their employees prepare.
The need is now
Based on recent national survey data, it is clear that Americans are not prepared. A survey fielded in September 2007 by ORC International and the American Red. Cross indicates that the nation's "RQ" - collective level of preparedness is 4.14 out of a possible 10. While this is an improvement over the 2006 RQ score of 3.31, much work still needs to be done.
Pass it along
By taking a few simple steps, Americans can be better prepared. Disasters can happen at any time - and being prepared helps mitigate their effects on individuals and property. Learn what you need to do to be prepared.
Visit www.whatsyourRQ.org <http://www.whatsyourRQ.org> to learn more about how you can use the RQ survey to assess and improve your community's preparedness