Castries, Saint Lucia, August 4, 2008 (NEMO) – In October 2003 Saint Lucia's National Emergency Management Organisation (NEMO) – the agency responsible for preparing the island for, and coordinating its response to, disasters – completed the Mass Events Guidelines. This document was designed to ensure the safety of participants of Mass Crowd Events by providing policies and procedures for preventing, and responding to, emergencies during events at which large crowds are expected, and where there is the potential for mass casualties should things go wrong.
NEMO began a period of public education and consultation on the topic, and over the past four years there have been many constructive comments and amendments to the Guidelines. The document also received considerable exposure in the run-up to Saint Lucia’s 2008 Carnival celebrations.
The most recent consultation took place with Sporting Organisations on July 30, 2008, while a presentation of the amended document is planned at the Annual General Meeting of the Hewanorra Music Society in September. As the consultations wind down a deadline for comments of September 30th, 2008 has now been set.
The DRAFT Mass Events Guide is available on request from the NEMO Secretariat or may be downloaded from the Official Documents Section of the Government of Saint Lucia Website at http://stlucia.gov.lc/docs/nemo/MassEventsGuide.pdf .
It is hoped that as Members of the Public become more aware for the need for such safety protocols they will demand Event Planners put measurers in place for the hosting of safe large events, be they cultural, sporting, religious or political in nature.