Hurricane Florence’s Big Test of Support

The Homeland

The deluge known as Hurricane Florence has once again challenged the nation’s readiness to respond effectively to large-scale natural disasters in the homeland.  Effective responses save lives and enhance national resiliency.  They are an important deterrent to state and non-state actors, all of whom constantly evaluate whether there is space to make mischief and undermine public confidence in governing institutions during periods of response.  Good response is good national security.

The federal government has a plan known as the National Response Framework for responding to catastrophes at home.  The plan gives primacy to Governors to plan, resource and respond to events that take place in their States.  States have multi-State compacts to pool resources as well.  States can call up the National Guard in State Active Duty, under the command and control (and funding) of the Governor, to further bolster their capacity.  When events overwhelm States, Governors request help from the federal government.  Most often requests go to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), although States can also request help from the Departments of Interior and Agriculture for wildfires, and the Department of Health and Human Services for pandemics.

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The Homeland
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