Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN) spoke to over 300 Hoosier public health officials, emergency managers and first responders at the State Emergency Support Function (ESF-8) Conference in Indianapolis this morning. During her keynote address, the Congresswoman announced she will hold a Committee on Homeland Security Subcommittee Field Hearing in the 5th District this August.
"I am so thankful for the opportunity I had today to share my experiences in emergency management and disaster preparedness with some of our state's most dedicated and vital public servants," Brooks said. "Response to natural and man-made incidents must be coordinated to be effective. It's often said people can't exchange business cards for the first time when disaster strikes. That's why events like this are so important. They help us share best practices that save lives."
The Congresswoman's remarks focused on her lessons learned as Deputy Mayor of Indianapolis during the Goldsmith Administration and as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana during the Bush Administration. She shared insights from her participation in mass casualty exercises and her work with counterterrorism councils. She also discussed her efforts as Chair of the Homeland Security Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response and Communications.
"The subcommittee continues to focus on the impact of new technologies and social media on the ways we prepare for and respond to potentially catastrophic events," Brooks explained. "We're also committed to gathering input from a wide group of stakeholders from public and private enterprises and from across our nation. I look forward to holding a field hearing in my own district that focuses on Central Indiana's preparedness for a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear attack or other emergency that would mobilize many of the officials and responders I spoke to today."
The ESF-8 Conference is an annual meeting of local and state representatives from public health, hospitals, emergency management and other organizations that support health and medical response around Indiana. It is sponsored by the Indiana State Department of Health and the Indiana Department of Homeland Security.