CHHS Media Availability: Baltimore City Protests/Riots
The University of Maryland Center for Health and Homeland Security (CHHS), an academic consulting group based out of the University of Maryland, Baltimore campus, is actively following the recent incidents subsequent to the tragic death of Freddie Gray in police custody and the resulting protests and riots. As a Center with extensive knowledge of the legal field and operational best practices as they pertain to response to disasters, including civil unrest, our experts are available to discuss the following topics:
Policing and Community Relations: Our staff can speak to the importance of developing relationships prior to such incidents.
Legal Powers of Government: Our staff can speak to powers of the Governor – three statutes, which are applicable here and what powers do they entail, as well as Posse Comitatus – what is the active military allowed to do and what they are prohibited from doing. Additionally, what is the status of the National Guard and how does this interface with the Posse Comitatus?
Emergency Response/Coordination: Our staff can speak to the activation of an Emergency Operations Center – when does that happen and what is its role in an emergency such as civil unrest. Also, how does the coordination of resources between state, local and out of state first responders happen?
Continuity of Operations (COOP): Our staff can speak to the importance of continuity plans, for both government and private organizations when a civil disturbance impacts ability to continue normal operations. This includes identification of essential functions that need to be up and running within 12 hours of a disaster, as well as planning for relocation in the event a business’ primary location is out of commission.
CHHS routinely supports emergency operations in and around Baltimore City, including several staffers who have been called upon to work in activated Emergency Operations Centers throughout the state this week. Our thanks go out to the many first responders who are diligently working to contain violence in our hometown, and community leaders looking to bridge relationships while seeking justice.