The mission of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

The Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) objective is to give assistance to people and first responders during disasters in order to ensure that the entire nation works together to establish and improve preparedness, protection, response, and recovery from all hazards. There are five elements or aims in this mission statement that influence the agency's operations and management activities (FEMA, n.d.). To begin, the organization forms emergency alliances with various federal agencies, state governments, volunteers, and the commercial sector. It also entails creating a comprehensive national risk-based emergency management system. The agency is also concerned with hazard mitigation as a foundation of the emergency management system. The fourth element is the response and recovery from disaster, which should be rapid and effective. Lastly, local and state governments are involved in local emergency measures.

This mission statement is sufficient for the country’s emergency management operations because it focuses on all the appropriate elements of emergency management including risk identification, response and mitigation. The participation of local and state governments, citizens, private sector, and other stakeholde4rs is also appropriate because it ensures that the interests and needs of all stakeholders are met. The public and local governments understand their environments, so they can provide good information to identify and manage risks and emergencies in the community.

The states usually respond to disasters when the local jurisdiction is not able to handle them due to lack of resources and other capabilities. The primary role of the state government is to provide support as agents to the local jurisdictions because the local governments cannot access federal emergency programs directly (Uys, 2006). The state monitors the situation; reviews and evaluates the local response; determines whether the local government lacks the capacity to respond; declares a state of emergency; and requests assistance from the federal government. The state government proclaims a state of disaster by developing a state disaster management plan and provides assistance and resources needed to implement the plan.

The role played by the Federal Emergency Management Agency helps in disaster response and management significantly because it enables the different stakeholders to respond on time to mitigate risks and disasters experienced in the country. FEMA acts as a management agency to utilize the resources and support from the different levels of government in mitigating disasters (FEMA, n.d.). The agency helps local and state governments in identifying disasters and appropriate initial response measures. It also helps local and federal governments to identify resources and methods needed to deal with the disaster to achieve the best outcome using the least resources. Therefore, FEMA promotes the efficiency and effectiveness of emergency management.

The most critical responsibilities held by the state are the support to local governments and linkage with the federal government. The state government plays an important role in supporting the local governments to identify and respond to disasters at the initial stages, preventing further spread of the disaster. It also helps the local government by communicating with the central government to get the required resources for the emergency management (Uys, 2006). The state government understands what goes on in the local communities than the federal government, so the coordination between the state government and the central government is crucial in achieving effective disaster management.

In a National Response Plan, the most important group of first responders are citizens because they help to evacuate people and guide the experts in the areas that need immediate response. They provide support and guide to the responders in terms of communicating with relevant authorities (Uys, 2006). If the citizens do not inform the relevant authorities about a disaster on time, the authorities will not respond on time to minimize the impact of the disaster.


FEMA (n.d.). About the Agency: Mission. Accessed from

Uys, F. (2006). Coordination in disaster management. Politeia, 25(1), 57-72.

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