Mayor Michael Pavia swore in members of a new advisory group Tuesday night that will lead the city's efforts to prepare its residents for major disasters and emergencies. Members of the new group include Stamford Emergency Management Police Chief Thomas Lombardo and John Perrotta, director of security and safety for .
Tentatively named the Critical Incident Planning & Response Group by its director Chris Munger, special assistant to Pavia in emergency planning and training, the group consists of volunteers with backgrounds in corporate and military training, security, government, emergency management and education.
"This group consists of professional people from various walks of life who participate in government service and planning for emergency matters," Pavia told Patch. "This is actually the first step toward creating a civil preparedness unit within the city of Stamford, where people on a volunteer basis will be trained and then become sworn in to perform certain aspects of emergency service in the event of a disaster whether natural or manmade."
The group, according to Pavia, will then recruit additional civilians to volunteer and receive emergency preparedness training in areas, including traffic control, medical services and evacuation procedures. Pavia created the group under a Connecticut statute permitting cities and town to "establish a local organization for civil preparedness."
According to Munger, nine residents were sworn in as members in Tuesday night, while at least five more have plans to join the advisory group in the near future. He also told Patch that the group will begin recruiting additional volunteers this summer. Each volunteer will be required to undergo a background check before being sworn in.
Members of the Critical Incident Planning & Response Group sworn in by Pavia Tuesday night are:
[Editor's Note: To hear Mayor Pavia discuss the formation of the group in further detail, click the video above.]