Office of Civil Defense

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Office of Civil Defense The Office of Civil Defense (OCD) has the primary task of coordinating the activities and functions of various government agencies and instrumentalities, private institutions and civic organizations for the protection and preservation of life and property during disasters and emergencies. It serves as the operating arm and secretariat of the national disaster coordinating council and maintains the National Disaster Management Operations Center. Governing Laws for OCDs Existence The Office of Civil Defense is existing on the basis of Letter of Instructions No. 19 and Presidential Decree No. 1566. Its mandate emanates from Presidential Decree No. 1, series of 1972 as implemented by Letter of Instruction No. 19 of 1972. This law stipulates that during times of war and emergencies, the OCD is the principal agency responsible for coordinating the activities and functions of various government agencies and instrumentalities at all levels, including private institutions and civic organizations devoted to public welfare. This is to ensure that the facilities and resources of the entire nation may be utilized to the maximum extent for the protection and preservation of peoples life and property. The Office of Civil Defense, apart from being an attached bureau of the Department of National Defense (DND), is also the operating arm and the secretariat of the National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC), which is the highest policy-making, coordinating and supervising body at the national level for disaster management in the country (Presidential Decree No. 1566 dated 11 June 1978). LOI 19 dated December 31, 1972 mandates the OCD to carry out the following functions: 1. Establish and administer a comprehensive national civil defense and assistance program; 2. Formulate policies for the protection and welfare of the civilian population in time of war directly involving the Philippines or other national emergencies of equally grave character;3. Estimate the total material, manpower and fiscal requirements for

carrying out the national civil defense and civil assistance program and allocate to the provinces, cities, municipalities and barangays such aid in facilities, materials and funds as may be made available from the national government;

4. Develop and coordinate a program for informing, educating and training the general public and volunteer workers on civil defense and civil assistance measures and activities; 5. Furnish guidance to the various provinces, cities, and municipalities in the planning, organization and operation of their civil defense organizations; 6. Advice the Secretary on matters concerning civil defense and make recommendations from time to time as may be deemed appropriate or as the Secretary may require; and 7. Perform such other functions as may be provided by law. Under PD 1566 dated 11 June 1978, OCD shall have the following additional functions: 1. Coordinate the activities and functions of the various agencies and instrumentalities of the National Government and private institutions and civic organizations to implement the policies set by the National Disaster Coordinating Council relative to Disaster Management; 2. Provide secretariat services to the National Disaster Coordinating Council; 3. Prepare and disseminate disaster control manuals and other publications related to measures on disaster prevention, control and mitigation; and 4. Advise the Chairman on matters concerning Disaster Management. Vision and Mission Agency Vision While systems and mechanisms have been set in place from the national, regional and local levels to address disasters and emergencies, OCD continuously strive to enhance them to be more responsive in dealing with disasters. OCD aims for the following: A service-oriented organization A prepared population A safe nation Mission of the Agency With the above-stated vision, OCD is committed to administer a comprehensive national civil defense and civil assistance program by

providing leadership in the continuous development of measures to reduce risk to communities and manage the consequence of disasters. Implementing Strategies of the OCD Strategic Leadership The OCD has taken the national leadership in the continuous development of measures to reduce risk to communities. This involves providing national strategic leadership by working with stakeholders to identify issues of national importance, develop and implement strategies to address them to include national approaches to disaster mitigation, education, training, research, consequence management and disaster information management. Disaster Mitigation Disaster Mitigation measures such as land use planning, building codes and standards, community awareness, structural measures, warning systems, planning and training prevent or reduce the impact of hazards on communities. Effective mitigation represents an investment, with both shortterm and long-term benefits for the local, regional and national economy, the environment and the community at large. OCDs role is to strengthen partnership with ever-expanding organizations to promote a greater investment on mitigation and work on projects that will build mitigation capability by, for example, developing and delivering training courses for local government and planners, supporting research to better understand the costs of disaster and the benefits of mitigation, and developing best practice guidelines. Planning for Emergency and Disaster Response The ability to respond to emergencies requires careful planning. Contingency plans shall be in place to meet LGUs request for national government assistance arising from any type of disaster. This plan details procedures for provision of national assistance in the event of a major disaster. OCD maintains a number of hazard-specific contingency plans. It has the responsibility to develop a process of soliciting feedback from LGUs on the utilization and effectiveness of their contingency plans, and to review the Implementing Plans of all NDCC member agencies in accordance with the National Calamities and Preparedness Plan. Consequence Management Consequence management is a developing concept and is about protecting public health and safety, restoring essential government services and providing emergency relief to businesses and individuals affected by the consequences of natural, technological and human-caused disasters. International Engagement

OCD is responsible for interfacing with international stakeholders assisting in emergencies, and in maintaining close links with emergency management agencies throughout the world. Through international linkages, assistance in the field of training and capacity building, as well as planning for postdisaster are extended to the country. In addition, the countrys membership (through OCD) in international organizations such as ADRC, ACDM, UNDAC and UN-ISDR is providing the avenue wherein concerted effort in disaster risk management is being achieved in international and local fronts. Response Coordination OCD is responsible for the coordination of disaster assistance provided by the national and foreign governments. In times of disasters of great magnitude, when the local government units are unable to cope, the OCD, through its regional offices, works in close collaboration with other government and non-government agencies for the efficient provision of relief and financial assistance and optimum utilization of available resources. Coordinated response in order to save lives, protect properties and deal with the immediate damage/impact of disaster is this Office primary concern.

Emergency Management Research OCD takes an active lead in disaster/emergency management research in coordination with NDCC member agencies. The Bureau also maintains its partnership with the UN-OCHA, UNDP, UNHCR, UNICEF, WB/WBI and other research organizations to attain research results that can be utilized by disaster risk managers. A nationally-agreed disaster/emergency management research agenda focuses on emergency management and communities, costs of disasters, and government decision making in planning for and managing emergencies. OCD is involved in applied research including post disaster impact studies, hosting/sponsoring of specialist seminars, and facilitating consultancies. Education and Training The OCDs role includes development/enhancement of standardized training methods and information materials for effective multi-agency training, identification and development of best practice in emergency management, and development and delivery of accredited education and training activities. In partnership with PAGASA, PHIVOLCS, MGB and other specialist agencies, OCD produced publications which provide background information and practical advice on preparing for, reacting to and coping with, major hazards including typhoons, floods, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. Community-Based Disaster Management

Community-Based Disaster Management (CBDM) is one of the approaches provided by the countrys Disaster Management Law (Presidential Decree No. 1566). CBDM is about people empowerment down to the barangay level in order for communities to be resilient to disasters. This is also a paradigm shift, from disaster response to disaster risk management. Various organizations in the country, government and non-government alike, have already ventured into CBDM-related initiatives following different frameworks and focusing on different areas. The OCD plays a key role in the formulation of a CBDM Framework at the national level that will serve as the working guide of all local government units as well as communities throughout the country to ensure complementation and synergy of initiatives. Emergency Management Innovation Innovative project proposals addressing risk management, mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery strategies are being sup