The City of Des Plaines has had a civil defense / emergency management component dating back to 1942. Over the years, the City has grown and changed. The City of Des Plaines Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency, as of May 1, 2009, is one of only five agencies mandated and accredited as an Emergency Management Agency (EMA) in Cook County.
The other four municipal accredited agencies are Chicago, Evanston, Palatine, and Tinley Park. As a matter of fact, there are very few EMA organizations below the county level that are accredited in Illinois. Being and remaining an accredited agency requires extensive reviewing of plans and meeting, training and exercise requirements; providing an annual work plan; and staying current on the filing of state paperwork.
The City of Des Plaines Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency is responsible for providing a Citywide Homeland Security and Emergency Management Program that will integrate all available first responders, city departments, resources, key elected and appointed officials, citizens corps, and the private sector into a cohesive disaster management effort. Under the direction of the mayor, city manager, executive coordinator, and the incident management team, the agency is responsible for the planning and preparedness necessary to coordinate the elements of an effective Homeland Security and Emergency Management Program.
The agency, under the direction of the executive coordinator, is responsible for the planning and preparedness necessary to coordinate the elements and principles of Homeland Security, Emergency Management, Citizen Corps, and the National Incident Management System (NIMS) for the protection of the residents and visitors to our city.