pon arrival at a RC, evacuees should be met by a Meeter and Greeter. Meeters and Greeters do a rapid assessment of the evacuees by looking at both verbal and non-verbal cues and then refer them to the appropriate ESS.
If the evacuee is distraught, the Meeter and Greeter can escort the evacuee to an Emotional Support Worker. Any evacuees requiring an extra hand because of a special need such as a physical and/or mental disability, or seniors requiring assistance, etc., may be escorted to a Special Needs Worker. Alternatively, an Emotional Support Worker or a Special Needs Worker may be summoned to assist the evacuee at the entry door.
If an evacuee is injured or visibly sick, a Meeter and Greeter will escort them to First Aid. All serious injuries or illnesses should be referred to the hospital or clinic.
If emotional support, first aid, or special needs services are not required, they are given the Evacuee Information Sheet and ESS brochure titled “After the Evacuation – Help When You Need it Most”, which provides information such as:
- What ESS is
- What types of services are available
- What evacuees can do to help themselves and others
If an evacuee brings their pet to the RC, the Meeters and Greeters will request that while they are being helped in the RC, the pets remain in the owners’ vehicle (if vehicle is at RC) or be taken to the secure area established for pets. Depending on weather – never leave an animal in a vehicle even with a window cracked open, see Pet Services. Only service animals will be permitted inside the RC area.
If an evacuee needs referrals for food, clothing, lodging, or other services, the Meeters and Greeters will refer them to the sign-in for service and waiting area. A numbering system (e.g., having a set of pre-printed, laminated numbers with the ESS Logo on the back) is helpful in keeping an orderly progression for each family unit to next available Registration and Referrals Worker. A place to sit, reading materials, and refreshments should be made available in the waiting area. Evacuees will be directed to a Registration and Referrals Worker when available. If there is no waiting line for services, the Meeters and Greeters can refer the evacuee directly to a Registration and Referrals Worker.
If an evacuee does not require any services (they have family or friends to stay with and have not lost their possessions) Meeters and Greeters will encourage them to register at Registration Only. Meeters and Greeters need to emphasize the importance of registering, however it is not mandatory.
Anyone not needing any assistance and only wanting to inquire about missing family or friends is to be referred to Inquiry About Family and Friends.
A mobile Registration and Referrals Worker’s team can assist with the completion of the ESS File – Registration and Services Record at the other areas within the RC, (e.g., for those people with special needs). Ideally, all ESS responders are cross-trained to provide Registration and Referrals to evacuees needing specialized services so that they do not need to be reintroduced to the mainstream waiting area.
Visitors to the Reception Centre
Individuals coming into the RC who are only looking for information on the disaster or the operation of the RC itself, may be referred by the Meeters and Greeters, to the Information Desk and/or the Information Officer (IO) or RC Manager depending on the request. Having an information display board up can assist with lessening the need to engage the Information Officer or RC Manager, who will be very busy already.
Media should be provided with a Media Visitor tag and asked to wait in a secure area while the IO or RC Manager is notified of media being on-site. The IO or RC Manager will then proceed to the area where the media is waiting. This will reduce the risk of the media entering the RC and being able to hear confidential discussions and/or information, and potentially taking photos and/or video footage.
The RC Manager should contact the EOC for IO support. Whenever possible, the local authority should designate a trained IO to support the RC and, when necessary, speak with the media on behalf of the local authority.
Anyone coming into the RC to volunteer their services is directed to Volunteer/Staff Management. If there are a large number of walk-in volunteers, a table may be set-up outside where names and contact information can be taken for later use.
If police come in looking for a registered evacuee, notify the RC Manager or Liaison Officer, who will meet them at the door.
A flow chart summarizing where the evacuee and visitors are referred to by the Meeter and Greeter after they arrive at a RC, is depicted in the figure below.