Emergency Program Act Modernization



What was this engagement about?

Emergency Management B.C. (EMBC) is modernizing the Emergency Program Act (EPA) to support more effective management of emergencies in B.C. by incorporating international best practices, including the United Nations (UN) Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (Sendai Framework); the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (the Declaration); and the draft principles that guide the Province’s relationship with Indigenous Peoples.

In October 2018, B.C. become the first Canadian province to adopt the Sendai Framework. One of its key tenets is an “all of society” approach to emergency management to help build resilience at the individual and community levels. In May 2019, BC adopted an Interim Disaster Recovery Framework to provide a governance and operational structure for recovery prior to development of the new legislation. The proposals outlined in the discussion paper will provide the legislative framework to build on these measures and will position B.C. as a leading jurisdiction in emergency management.

The new Act will reflect the lessons learned from the unprecedented flood and wildfire seasons in 2017 and 2018, address all four pillars of emergency management (mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery), and place more emphasis on up-front disaster risk reduction in order to prevent events from happening and to lessen the impact when they do occur.
On October 28, Minister Mike Farnworth publicly released a discussion paper explaining the need for new legislation and outlining the proposed policy direction for modernized emergency management legislation. With the discussion paper government sought comment and feedback from its many emergency management partners and the public.

Citizens could download the Emergency Management Legislation Discussion Paper and share their feedback during the engagement period.
 

How will my contribution make a difference?

EMBC used the feedback from the public engagement period to inform the What We Heard Report, outlining the path forward. The findings in this report are summarized in the What We Heard Summary Brief.

New legislation is expected to be introduced in the Spring 2021 legislative session. This new legislation will reflect lessons learned from the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic and the flood and wildfire seasons in 2017 and 2018, address all four pillars of emergency management (mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery), and place more emphasis on up-front disaster risk reduction in order to prevent events from happening and to lessen the impact when they do occur.

EMBC is committed to working with partners and communities to develop regulations, policies and procedures to support the introduced legislation. Stay tuned for future engagement opportunities.

Learn more about the upcoming changes to the changes to the emergency program act, including key alignments and an updated timeline.
 

Details of the Engagement:

Date: August 31 – September 30, 2020

Status: Closed

Location: Province-wide

Category: Health and Safety

Types: Email

 

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