Resources for emergency preparedness

As your congregation studies and explores ways to get ready for a pandemic emergency, you will find that many of these preparations can be used to plan for any disaster or emergency event—things like snow or ice storms, floods, fires, or any other event that affects larger numbers of people.

On these pages you will find the kinds of disasters can happen in North America, who responds, and some resources for congregational preparedness.  Since most of these disasters are not health emergencies, the church building and its members can often be even more helpful to their community without the restrictions that health-related events require. Guiding documents are available from Mennonite Disaster Services: Resources.

The following organizations have key responsibilities in Canadian Disaster Management

PUBLIC SAFETY CANADA is the Government of Canada department responsible for Emergency Management at the federal level. Its goal is to reduce the impact of disasters; to develop national policy, response systems and standards; and to issue timely alerts and to help protect Canada's critical infrastructure. They also work closely with emergency management organizations across Canada, and support regional partners and first responders with funds, tools and training.

At the hub of the national emergency management system is the Government Operations Centre, which Public Safety Canada runs for the Government of Canada. It's an advanced communications centre for monitoring and coordinating the federal response to an emergency.

EMERGENCY MEASURES/MANAGEMENT (EMO) ORGANIZATIONS are provincial and territorial agencies relating to the Emergency Management branch of Public Safety Canada. They are responsible for coordinating disaster management planning and research, training, response operations, and administration and delivery of disaster financial assistance programs at the provincial or territorial level. They work closely with municipalities and counties to ensure those governments have necessary training, organizations and equipment for an initial response to an event. They manage Provincial Operations Centres in times of disasters or emergencies. Further information about these agencies can be found under the Types of Disasters and Provincial and Regional Health Authorities dropdowns on this page.



EMERGENCY SOCIAL SERVICES ORGANIZATIONS are established in each Province and Territory. They are responsible for assisting people in their recovery from a disaster or national emergency. They address physical, emotional and social needs by providing emergency clothing, lodging, food and personal psychological services, along with registration, inquiry and reception services. These organizations relate to each other and to the Centre for Emergency Preparedness and Response (CEPR) of the Public Health Agency of Canada federally.

EMERGENCY HEALTH SERVICES ORGANIZATIONS are established in each Province and Territory to ensure best practices in emergency health services through regulation, prevention, education and research. This requires an integrated, sustainable emergency health system, and a cadre of competent regulators, contractors, paramedics and other EHS staff and volunteers all committed to quality care. This also requires integration with the larger health care system and regional health authorities, as well as with other government and non-government organizations involved in emergency health and disaster management in general. These organizations relate to each other and to the Centre for Emergency Preparedness and Response (CEPR) federally.

NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS manage the coordinated response by trained and episodic volunteers to disasters and emergencies through staff and volunteer leaders. They have various and differing mandates and missions as determined by their organizational missions and resources. While taking the lead from government agencies in disaster management, they maintain their autonomy and unique missions and motivations. One example of such an organization is Mennonite Disaster Service. These organizations relate to each other, to the CEPR of Public Health Agency of Canada federally and to Public Safety Canada (see links to these organizations above).

Provincial Level contacts
(who can give you contact information for your
local municipal and regional health planners)
Regional Health Authority Contacts

Alberta Emergency Management Agency
14515 122 Ave NW
Edmonton, AB T5L 2W4
(780) 422-9000
310-0000 (toll free in Alberta)

Regional offices


British Columbia Provincial Emergency Program
Emergency management B.C. Office Contacts
BC Regional Health Authorities
Manitoba Emergency Measures Organization

General Office

Phone: (204) 945-3050
Toll Free: 1-888-267-8298
Fax: (204) 945-4929

1525 - 405 Broadway
Winnipeg, Manitoba
Canada R3C 3L6

Email for Disaster Financial Assistance:

Newfoundland & Labrador Emergency Measures Organization
Confederation Building
P.O. Box 8700
St. John’s, NLA1B 4J6
(709) 729-3703
(709) 729-3857 (fax)

New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization
Marysville Place
Floor: 3
P. O. Box 6000
Fredericton, NB
E3B 5H1
Reception : (506) 453-3992
Email :

New Brunswick Health Authority
Northwest Territories Emergency Measures Organization
Municipal and Community Affairs Public Safety
600, 5201 - 50th Ave
YellowknifeNT X1A 3S9
Main Reception
(867) 767-9161 ext. 21021
Nova Scotia Emergency Management Office
PO Box 2581
Halifax NS B3J 3N5
(903) 424-5620
(903) 424-5376 (fax)

Nunavut Emergency Management
Community & Government Services

Nunavut Emergency Management
Department Community and Government Services
Government of Nunavut
P.O. Box 1000 Station 700
Iqaluit, Nunavut
X0A 0H0
Fax: (867) 979-4221

Emergency Measures 24 Hour TOLL FREE: 1-800-693-1666
Emergency Services Response 24 Hours: 1-867-979-6262

Emergency Management Ontario
Ministry of the Solicitor General
18th Floor
25 Grosvenor Street
Toronto ON
M7A 1Y6

(416) 326-5000

Toll free: 1-866-517-0571

Fax: 416-326-0498

Prince Edward Island Emergency Measures Organization

Public Safety Division
PO Box 911
Charlottetown, PE   C1A 7L9

Phone: 902-894-0385
Toll-free: 1-877-894-0385
Fax: 902-368-6362

Sécurité Public Québec
Direction des communications
2525, boul. Laurier, 5th Floor
Tour du Saint-Laurent
ANNEX B 1600–19
2007 Edition
Québec, QC G1V 2L2
(418) 644-6826 or (866) 644-6826
(418) 643-3194 (fax)
Saskatchewan Emergency Planning
Saskatchewan Public Safety Agency
Phone: 306-787-3774
Fax: 306-787-7107
Sask Health
Yukon Emergency Measures Organization
Government of Yukon
Box 2703
Whitehorse, Yukon, 
Y1A 2C6

Phone: 867-667-5811 or 867-667-5812 or toll free in Yukon 1-800-661-0408



Although the consequences of disasters can be similar, knowing the risks specific to your community and your region can help you better prepare. Find out here what the hazards are in your region and the agency with public responsibility.

The Government of Canada maintains a page called "Get prepared" that outlines all the types of disasters that you might prepare for.

For a Canadian database of actual disasters by timeframe, disaster type and province or territory, please see the Canadian Disaster Database

You might also refer to the emergency management sites maintained by each province/territory:

General: There are many forms of severe weather in Canada (heat/cold, torrential rains, blizzards, ice storms, droughts, etc.) not specifically mentioned above. In addition to natural disasters there are other types of risks. There are power outages, industrial and major transportation incidents. As well, there is the possibility of intentional acts including terrorism on Canadian soil and other human caused disasters such as bombings, school and other public shootings, and chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear emergencies.