Participation in Municipal Emergency Management Programs


Category: Emergency Management
Subject: Participation in Municipal Emergency Management Programs
Division: N/A
Policy Number: CA.57.01.101
Effective Date: November 9, 2011 


Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health (WDGPH) is required by provincial legislation to prepare for any community health emergency or an emergency with health impacts.  It is also required to participate in the emergency management program of the municipalities in its jurisdiction by attending municipal emergency exercises and training for the Municipal Emergency Control Group (MECG) members.

It is the policy of WDGPH to provide one or more representatives with knowledge of public health and municipal emergency management program requirements to participate actively at each municipal exercise. Further, every time an upper tier municipality (including the County of Wellington, County of Dufferin, and City of Guelph) conducts an emergency exercise, WDGPH will set up an internal Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) in order to provide technical support to the Medical Officer of Health (MOH) or alternate. This internal EOC will either be on-site at the municipality in space provided by the municipality, or in one of the WDGPH offices, as per the municipality’s exercise provisions.

Note that this policy pertains to resource availability for training purposes only, and does not reflect resources or processes that would be available in an impending or actual emergency or incident.


This policy applies to all employees of WDGPH


Medical Officer of Health/CEO will:
  • Attend exercises of the upper tier municipalities when possible; advise when an alternate is needed to attend;
  • Ensure an Executive Assistant or other program staff is selected to attend upper tier exercises as Scribe; and
  • Receive management recommendations that result from exercise participation and observation. 
Senior Management:
  • Will ensure that WDGPH is committed to developing resiliency and increasing agency expertise in emergency response across the organization by ensuring the provision of training in public health and municipal emergency management program requirements to Managers and employees from all divisions; and
  • Representative(s) who attend as the alternate to the MOH within the municipal Emergency Operations Centre will have familiarity with WDGPH program requirements and municipal emergency management program requirements by attending municipally-sponsored training. 
  • The programs within the Health Protection Division will provide Public Health Inspectors (PHI) and Control of Infectious Diseases (CID) staff as technical supports to upper tier exercises;
  • Programs within Corporate Support Services, such as Communications, Emergency Preparedness and Operations will provide staff in a support role to upper tier exercises as advised by the Manager of Emergency Preparedness;
  • The Manager of Emergency Preparedness will ensure space is booked when an internal agency EOC is required, attend exercises, and collect feedback from agency participants in a debriefing following each exercise.  Recommendations will be brought to senior management; and
  • Due to space limitations, Program Managers may send employees as observers to exercises only with the prior consent of the participating municipalities.
  • Employees assigned to provide administrative support to the representative in the EOC will have knowledge of administrative procedures, including minute-taking, documentation, or scribe training; and
  • Employees participating in any aspect of an emergency exercise will note what resources, processes, or training supports need to be in place or improved and will provide observations in a timely way by email or in writing to the Manager of Emergency Preparedness.


Municipal program requirements – Knowledge of the main tenets of the municipal emergency management program through training provided by the municipality (e.g., Basic Emergency Management course, Incident Management System (IMS) course, Scribe course).

Public Health program requirements – Knowledge pertinent to the nature of the simulated emergency situation (infection control, disease outbreak response protocols, health hazard response including familiarity with CANUTECH guidelines, drinking water systems protocols) and the agency’s emergency response plans.

Upper-tier municipalities – the County of Dufferin; the County of Wellington; the City of Guelph.

Lower-tier/local municipalities – The member municipalities of each of the upper-tier municipalities listed above.

Exercise – A simulated event that presents an emergency scenario and related inputs to permit the discussion and/or rehearsal of emergency response procedures by the agencies with a designated a response role as per mandated emergency management programs.


Corresponding Procedure:  N/A


Carole Desmeules