###- October 30, 2020 - (The following content was prepared in association with our partners at Majestic Collaborations in response to concerns about potential civil unrest in the U.S.)
Preparedness for Civil UnrestIn the past year, some arts and cultural venues have experienced destructive acts to their building. These community centers have often been at the flash point of civil unrest that surround them, and sometimes targeted because of what they represent. We all share the values of civil rights and peaceful protest. With these values in mind, we wanted to put forward a quick and shareable resource about preparedness for your organization as we come into November, that helps provide guidance for what people who exert control over physical space can do to contribute to creating a safe environment for all. Our preparedness plan focuses on three main steps–assess, prepare, implement—that you and your team can take to prepare in times of civil unrest. We hope these steps will act as a useful guide to ensure the safety of your staff and organization. The first step is to assess your organization’s situation. Ask yourself what happened the last time there was civil unrest in your area and use those lessons to inform your actions. Ensure you conduct a site walk through, communicate with neighbors, locate and update important information, and secure or relocate your assets.
- Security & Fire: Ensure cameras, locks, alarms, sprinklers, and extinguishers are fully functional;
- Hazards: Walk your site, making note of dumpsters, planters, rocks, and flammables;
- Recent Past: Use lessons learned from previous events to prioritize actions now;
- Neighbors: Learn about their concerns and plans for civil unrest.
- Remove: Remove projectiles such as rocks, planters, stanchions, trash cans, as well as obstructions to security camera sightlines;
- Purchase & Contract: Plywood or window film to protect windows, graffiti removal supplies, additional security, and perimeter fencing;
- Relocate: Irreplaceable art, records, and expensive equipment offsite or to interior, locked rooms;
- Plan, Practice, & Update: Plan and practice for building lockdowns and evacuations, and ensure staff, first responders, and security contacts and protocols are up to date.
- Remain Calm: Having a clear head will help you adapt in quickly changing situations
- Prioritize Staff Safety: Ensure staff members are not present at highly volatile times
- Stay Informed: Monitor local news sources and the social media accounts of local and state officials
- Act!: Be ready to call a shelter in place, lockdown, or evacuation, and safely call for medical attention for people you observe in need
###- September 24, 2020 - From our colleagues at Sound Diplomacy:
###- June 16, 2020 - Our colleagues at the Performing Arts Center Consortium have created the "Guide to Reopening Theatrical Venues" recognizing that until a COVID-19 vaccine and/or effective therapeutics become widely available, it may be many months before we can return to the mass gathering venues as we once were. The Guide will assist performing arts centers develop viable reopening plans that are tailored to their unique venues: https://www.apap365.org/Portals/1/PDFs/Advocacy/PACC%20Reopening%20Advisory%20%20Draft%20%20%20%20%20%20%20Ver%204.0.pdf
###- March 9, 2020 - Our colleagues at Americans for the Arts have posted the article, "Arts and Culture Sector Can Prepare for the Coronavirus in the United States": "Like most of you, Americans for the Arts has been watching the breaking news about Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) and we are seeing inquiries coming in from the field and through our national service organization colleagues. While gathering and sharing pertinent information, we are also working to understand the long-term effect on arts and culture activities from performance to festivals, touring artists, and school field trips... more information here"
###- January 30, 2020 - PRESS RELEASE Contact: Tom Clareson, Project Director, Performing Arts Readiness, email@example.com, 800.999.8558 x 2911 LYRASIS Receives Phase 2 Funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to Continue Performing Arts Readiness Project Atlanta, GA - January 17, 2020 - The Performing Arts Readiness project is pleased to announce that the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded a second round of funding to LYRASIS to support a second phase of the project. The new grant targets $2.3 million toward this next phase, which will build upon the core goal of strengthening resiliency among performing arts organizations by improving emergency preparedness practices. The new grant targets $2.3 million toward this second phase, which will build upon the core goal of strengthening resiliency among performing arts organizations by improving emergency preparedness practices. Over the past several years, the United States has seen numerous performing arts organizations impacted and in some cases their work halted because of environmental emergencies such as fires, hurricanes, flooding and more, as well as by man-made crises. This grant is designed to create awareness and develop preparedness plans in advance of disasters, so that recovery is quicker and more efficient, and to provide information and resources for recovery when crises strike. The first phase of the Performing Arts Readiness (PAR) project conducted extensive outreach to the performing arts community, including emergency preparedness presentations, webinars, and live workshops; provided online planning tools and case studies; offered six regional "Circuit Rider" mentoring programs to support local adoption of best practices; and awarded 41 grants to assist organizations in developing disaster plans and 10 grants to build networks among arts and culture organizations and first responders. In addition, PAR staff worked with organizations impacted by disasters such as Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria, and more. The second phase will continue the work conducted in phase one and will also include:
- New outreach to university graduate-degree programs in arts management and administration, to encourage inclusion of emergency preparedness as part of their curricula.
- A focus on safety, security, and environmental issues at performing arts and music festivals.
- Expansion of information resources (models, best practices, templates, etc.), educational programs, online planning tools, and subgrants to enable organizations of different types and sizes to create emergency or continuity of operations plans and train staff and volunteers in their use.
- Growing local community-based support and capacity for emergency preparedness and recovery through mentoring via five new Circuit Riders, hosted by local arts and culture organizations.
- Perform research into field needs and opportunities around preparedness, response and recovery to form a sustainability plan for PAR that integrates support and action among partners and other organizations committed to strengthening cultural arts and heritage in the U.S.
###- June 6, 2019 - "The Art of Mass Gatherings" symposium will take place in Denver, CO on June 6. This event will educate and empower our colleagues to prepare for and respond to various types of emergencies, including natural, manmade, and technical disasters. Through a curated curriculum and specific skill-sharing opportunities, this symposium will embrace a whole community approach to event safety and preparedness and will offer suggestions and solutions to enhance events and gatherings. The symposium will feature experts from around the country as they present one case study, six on-site tours, and five short, fast-paced presentations. Symposium hosts coordinated with PrideFest organizers to allow on-site learning during the festival; this will allow presenters to highlight the festival’s emergency plan and gain insights about how an event can both excel and mature while developing a complete emergency preparedness plan. More information is here.
###- May 23, 2019 - The New Jersey Cultural Alliance for Response (NJCAR) invites New Jersey arts, history, and cultural organizations to learn more about the Alliance, build networks, and find resources to better prepare their organizations for emergencies both large and small. Three regional kickoff meetings have been scheduled: 6/10/19 (Central Jersey), 6/12/19 (North Jersey), 6/17/19 (South Jersey). More information about NJCAR and these three meetings is at: https://njculturalalliance.wixsite.com/njcar/single-post/2019/05/17/NJCAR-Regional-Kick-Off-Meetings
###- March 11, 2019 - The PAR project has seen a strong growing interest in training on Active Shooter situations from Performing Arts organizations. We are working in a number of states to match interested performing arts groups with Active Shooter training providers. Please contact us at PAR@lyrasis.org if you need this information for your organization. Ready Houston has created a widely-utilized training video called "Run. Hide. Fight." that contains survival strategies for active shooter events.
# # #- March 4, 2019 -
Article: "Houston Arts Alliance Helps Artists and Organizations Get Ready & Resilient"Hurricane Harvey dumped some 15 trillion gallons of water on the Bayou City, creating havoc for the Downtown theater district, along with many artists and arts organizations. Hurricane season in Texas lasts June thru November, although in recent years, it seems like it never leaves us. Mentally, it is a year-round event, as all those in the region still suffering from the effects of Hurricane Harvey over a year later will attest. The Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) is partnering with Galveston Historical Foundation on a regional arts preparedness and recovery system funded in part by the Houston Endowment. The Houston Area Arts and History Disaster Resilience Plan will help artists prepare for the next sudden and/or historic event. HAA will also focus on building up their website as an evergreen resource for artists to access at any time and facilitate preparedness workshops when hurricane season looms again. Read the full article here and visit HAA’s new Disaster Resilience website for readiness and resilience resources to learn more.
###- November 26, 2018 - For immediate release, Contact: Eric Covey, 802-828-2148
Vermont Secretary of State’s Office and Vermont Arts Council Receive Emergency Preparedness GrantMontpelier, VT – Secretary of State Jim Condos and State Archivist Tanya Marshall announced today that the Vermont Secretary of State’s Office, in collaboration with the Vermont Arts Council, has been awarded a $15,000 grant to develop a statewide emergency preparedness and response network for Vermont-based performing arts and cultural heritage organizations. Funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation through the Performing Arts Readiness Project, the grant will be administered by the Vermont Historical Records Program of the Vermont State Archives and Records Administration. “Vermont’s performing arts and cultural heritage organizations play a vital role in the promotion and preservation of our unique history and cultural institutions,” said Secretary Condos. “We’re grateful for this opportunity to work alongside our partners to ensure we have the preparedness measures in place to help prevent the loss of these valuable assets in a worst case scenario.” Vermont native and accomplished arts management consultant Mary Margaret Schoenfeld will lead the effort and work with various organizations to develop the network and services offered, as well as a sustainability plan. The statewide emergency preparedness and response network is anticipated to be introduced at a forum next summer. The mission of the Vermont Historical Records Program (VHRP) is to improve public access to and engagement with Vermont historical records and to encourage and facilitate collaborative efforts among Vermont historical records repositories. The Vermont Arts Council envisions a Vermont where all people have access to the arts and creativity in their lives, education, and communities. Performing arts organizations can be especially vulnerable to disasters and emergencies of all kinds, resulting in destabilizing or catastrophic loss of income and assets. The Performing Arts Readiness project helps organizations nationwide learn how to protect their assets, sustain operations, and be prepared for emergencies. The project includes outreach and engagement efforts, the development and dissemination of information resources and online toolkits, mentoring programs, and grants such as the one awarded to Vermont. For additional information about VHRP or the statewide emergency preparedness and response network, contact VHRP Coordinator Rachel Onuf at firstname.lastname@example.org or 802-828-2204.
# # #- November 15, 2018 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: CONTACT: Will Wright, Chief Creative Officer, Office: 409-765-3404, email@example.com
HOUSTON ARTS ALLIANCE & GALVESTON HISTORICAL FOUNDATION ANNOUNCE THE DEVELOPMENT OF A REGIONAL ARTS PREPAREDNESS SYSTEM: GHF and HAA to Engage the Entire Arts Community in Creating Plan for the Next Sudden, Historic DisruptionGalveston Island, Texas, November 15, 2018—Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) and Galveston Historical Foundation (GHF) today announced the start of a planning process for a regional arts preparedness and recovery system. With input from the larger arts and culture community and with grants from Houston Endowment, HAA and GHF will create coordinated programs to help arts and cultural organizations and individual artists in the ten-county region prepare for the next sudden or historic disruption. When the effort is successful, the work may also serve as a model for other arts preparedness planning efforts statewide and nationally. After both Hurricanes Ike and Harvey, the arts and cultural organizations and individual artists comprising the region’s largely non-profit sector suffered losses and faced challenges to recover as never before. Hurricane Harvey especially highlighted the lack of a coordinated response and recovery system in place for arts organizations. “There is a critical need to develop a model network for communication and education that would enhance all emergency planning, response, and recovery,” said Dwayne Jones, Executive Director of Galveston Historical Foundation and a longtime leader in cultural response and recovery for the region. According to national research, Houston’s cultural economy is valued at $1.1. billion. It’s estimated that there are more than 1,000 arts and cultural organizations in the region and that culture supports 26,000 full-time jobs and generates $801.6 million in household income locally. “It is crucial for our community to prepare for future disasters in order to minimize damage to Houston’s robust cultural economy,” said John Abodeely, CEO of Houston Arts Alliance. “Given its scale, creating resilience is an economic imperative, as well as a moral one.” This new collectively led and community-driven planning process—with input from a robust Advisory Committee composed of artists, arts managers, and public officials—will seek to understand how the region is vulnerable and what must be done to assure its long-term security. This deep dive into the region’s creative sector will include large and small institutions, artists, philanthropists, public sector officials, leaders of cultural districts, and others. The resulting plan for resilience will ensure Houston is ready to act on behalf of the entire region’s incredible diversity. “We hope that members of the arts sector will be able to draw on one another’s lessons learned from both Harvey and Ike to strengthen the resilience of the entire arts ecosystem,” said Long Chu, program officer at Houston Endowment, which will remain engaged throughout the planning process. Additionally, the project will collect contact information from arts and cultural organizations throughout the region. Information collected will be stored in a database for program managers to send detailed communications before, during, and after disasters to the region’s creative economy. Pre-disaster recommendations as well as resources for post-disaster needs will be part of a larger regional communications plan, all intended to keep organizations connected to the resources and information needed in crucial times. Individual assistance, as well as regional meetings will result in a more resilient arts and cultural community in the region. For more information on the Greater Houston-Galveston Arts and Cultural Response and Recovery Program, contact John Abodeely at 713-527-9330 or firstname.lastname@example.org or contact program manager Bekah Guedry at 409-765-3403 or email@example.com. ABOUT HOUSTON ARTS ALLIANCE Houston Arts Alliance (HAA) is a local arts and culture agency that enhances the quality of life in Houston by advancing the arts, the working lives of artists, and the operations of cultural nonprofits. HAA helps artists and arts organizations create bold work; collect and disseminate data about the arts; connect communities to creative experiences; and incubate innovation. The Houston Arts Alliance executes special projects to meet the needs of the arts community, as needs arise. HAA also runs two primary programs: Grants + Capacity Building and Civic Art + Design, which includes the City of Houston’s public art and arts grants initiatives. Currently, HAA is executing disaster resilience trainings for artists and nonprofits with support from Performing Arts Readiness project, Rebuild Texas, Southwest Airlines, and several Houston philanthropists. Visit them online at www.houstonartsalliance.com. ABOUT GALVESTON HISTORICAL FOUNDATION GHF was formed as the Galveston Historical Society in 1871 and merged with a new organization created in 1954 as a non-profit entity devoted to historic preservation and history in Galveston County. Over the last sixty years, GHF has expanded its mission to encompass community redevelopment, historic preservation advocacy, maritime preservation, coastal resiliency and stewardship of historic properties. GHF embraces a broader vision of history and architecture that encompasses advancements in environmental and natural sciences and their intersection with historic buildings and coastal life and conceives of history as an engaging story of individual lives and experiences on Galveston Island from the 19th century to the present day. They can be found online at www.galvestonhistory.org. For more information, please contact Will Wright, Galveston Historical Foundation’s Chief Creative Officer at 409-765-3404 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
# # #- November 14, 2018 - from CERF+: "As we continue to hear about the impact of the wildfires in California, CERF+ is reaching out to artists and arts organizations in affected communities to provide emergency relief and useful recovery resources." More information is here. - November 13, 2018: Press Release from the Oregon Historical Society: "The Portland Alliance for Response Receives Performing Arts Readiness Grant" - Portland Alliance for Response, a local network of arts and culture institutions, including Oregon Historical Society, Oregon Symphony, Portland’5 Centers for the Arts, Portland Art Museum, Lewis and Clark College, Portland State University, and Portland Bureau of Emergency Management, is pleased to announce that we have received a grant from Performing Arts Readiness, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Portland Alliance for Response works with local cultural institutions, first responders, and emergency managers in the Portland, Oregon, metro area to develop relationships that foster mutual understanding. The grant will allow the Alliance to expand its reach to include performing arts organizations in a cooperative network to safeguard our cultural heritage and artistic legacy through effective communication and coordination of disaster preparedness and emergency response efforts. Over the next several months, we will work with a consultant to create an organizational structure and strategic goals. Our planning process will culminate in a networking event in 2019 to build membership from a broad array of performing arts organizations, libraries, archives, museums, emergency management agencies, and first response services. Press Contact: Shawna Gandy, Library Director, Oregon Historical Society, 503.306.5265 (desk), email@example.com - November 13, 2018: Emergency Preparedness 101 is a half-day workshop presented on December 13 at Kelly Strayhorn Theater’s Alloy Studios in Pittsburgh, PA. This session is designed for organizations of all sizes with varying years of operation, and at all stages of preparedness planning. We will cover an intro to disaster and business continuity planning, risk assessment exercises, information on the PAR project, as well as other available resources. More information and registration details are here. - October, 2018: New Jersey State Council on the Arts Names Allison Tratner as Executive Director: TRENTON, N.J. - The New Jersey State Council on the Arts has named Allison Tratner as the new Executive Director. The final vote confirming Ms. Tratner as the Executive Director was made yesterday during the Council's public meeting at Perkins Center for the Arts in Collingswood. (The full press release from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts is here. ) - October, 2018: "Houston Arts Alliance: Disasters won't bully us again" Harvey wrought $56 million in disaster-related damages to artists and arts organizations last year. Despite tough lessons learned, most artists and arts and history organizations in the Houston area remain unprepared for the next disaster... (The full article is on the Houston Chronicle website here.) - October, 2018: "Puerto Rico: After the Storm" Ramón H. Rivera-Servera has spearheaded an innovative outreach initiative to assist Puerto Rican artists in the aftermath of last fall’s devastating hurricane. With a personal and professional foundation in performance and creation, Rivera-Servera homed in on this population: art makers and scholars who because of the storm were displaced, no longer able to work, or suddenly without the financial support that once sustained them. He decided to establish a residency and mentorship program for Puerto Rican artists to create, teach, and research on both the island and the mainland... (The full article is on the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation website here.) - September 11, 2018: Here are some additional links and tips for preparing for Hurricane Florence: - For tips on what to do before, during, and after a hurricane, go to https://www.ready.gov/hurricanes. - Download FEMA fact sheets “After the Flood: Advice for Salvaging Damaged Family Treasures” and “Salvaging Water-Damaged Family Valuables and Heirlooms,” available at https://www.fema.gov/media-library/assets/documents/113297. - Familiarize yourself with the disaster declaration process in case one is declared for your state, https://www.fema.gov/disaster-declaration-process. - Track the storm via the National Hurricane Center, https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/. - Monitor information via GEMA, http://www.gema.ga.gov/. - September 10, 2018 - From our colleagues at ArtsReady: ArtsReady Alert Hurricane Florence is approaching the US East Coast, and will likely have landfall Thursday or Friday. Residents of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia should anticipate impact and prepare accordingly. If you have an ArtsReady/readiness plan, we hope that triggering it into action provides you with the ability to prepare for the storm. If not, we encourage you to take a few basic steps to prepare your office/venue/studio for the potential impact before departing for your personal preparation - unless you are under an evacuation order, in which case you should follow the instructions of local/state officials immediately. If you aren’t in the hurricane’s path, please use this time to take a look at your own readiness planning in the event of a future emergency. Visit ArtsReady to start or build upon your readiness plan; sign up for free webinars on a variety of readiness and disaster planning offered through the Performing Arts Readiness project; and sign up to get regular information on grants, trainings and programs to improve your organization’s readiness and resiliency (much of this project’s content is relevant to arts organizations and artists of all disciplines). Be Prepared! Please use and share the following resources to ensure you are ready: HENFT Hurricane Preparedness Tips for Cultural Institutions Cerf+'s Resources for Artists: Hurricane - Studio Readiness Flood - Studio Readiness Studio Evacuation A few additional tips for arts organizations:
- Assign a readiness/emergency leader for your organization through whom all communications and information should be relayed. Decide who makes the decision about suspending operations/events, and how those decisions are communicated.
- Ensure you can carry out banking activity remotely, and that staff can work remotely if your offices/facility are inaccessible.
- If practical, de-install exhibits that may be threatened by weather or water and remove to a safer location.
- Secure outdoor sculptures, furniture, bike racks, signage, etc. – anything that can become a projectile in strong winds.
- Move costumes, scenery, instruments, valuable equipment and collections that are in areas vulnerable to flooding (i.e., the floor, the basement) or susceptible to rain (near windows or under roofs) out of harm’s way.
- Hurricane Preparedness Checklist - AgilityRecovery walks through the safe closure of your facility, as well as critical steps during and after the storm.
- FEMA’s ready.gov website has check lists and resources for before, during and after a hurricane as well as a disaster preparedness and response mobile app.
- The American Red Cross has a suite of well-designed apps to cover a wide range of emergencies, including hurricanes. Each app covers what to do if you are in the middle of an emergency, next steps, and preparedness tips.
LYRASIS is a non-profit membership organization that supports enduring access to shared academic, scientific and cultural heritage through leadership in open technologies, content services, digital solutions and collaboration with archives, libraries, museums and knowledge communities worldwide. Learn more at lyrasis.org.
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Founded in 1969, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation endeavors to strengthen, promote, and, where necessary, defend the contributions of the humanities and the arts to human flourishing and to the well-being of diverse and democratic societies by supporting exemplary institutions of higher education and culture as they renew and provide access to an invaluable heritage of ambitious, path-breaking work. Additional information is available at mellon.org.
ArtsReady at South Arts
ArtsReady, an online emergency preparedness service by and for arts/cultural nonprofits, provides arts organizations with customized business continuity plans for post-crisis sustainability. ArtsReady is a national initiative of South Arts. South Arts, one of the nation’s six regional arts organizations, strengthens the South through advancing excellence in the arts, connecting the arts to key state and national policies and nurturing a vibrant quality of life. South Arts works in partnership with the state arts agencies of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. The ArtsReady Library and online planning tool are at www.artsready.org.
Conservation Center for Art & Historic Artifacts
The Conservation Center for Art & Historic Artifacts (CCAHA) is a nonprofit conservation facility specializing in the treatment of works on paper, photographs, and books through conservation and state-of-the-art digital imaging services. Founded in 1977, CCAHA serves nonprofit cultural institutions, private individuals, and other collecting organizations. To learn more, please visit www.ccaha.org.
Midwest Art Conservation Center
The Midwest Art Conservation Center is a non-profit regional center for the preservation and conservation of art and artifacts, providing treatment, education, and training for museums, historical societies, libraries, other cultural institutions, artists, and the public. To learn more, visit www.preserveart.org.
National Performance Network
The National Performance Network, including the Visual Artists Network (NPN/VAN), is a group of diverse cultural organizers and artists, working to create meaningful partnerships and to provide leadership that enables the practice and public experience of the arts in the United States. For additional information, visit www.npnweb.org.
National Coalition for Arts’ Preparedness and Emergency Response
The Coalition is a voluntary network of government agencies, private organizations and individuals dedicated to building and sustaining an organized safety net of services, tools and information for those involved in the arts and culture sector – artists, arts/culture organizations and arts businesses – before, during, and after disasters and emergencies. The Coalition also collaborates with other sectors at national, regional, and local levels to strengthen recovery efforts in the larger community. Learn more here.
New Jersey State Council on the Arts
The New Jersey State Council on the Arts, created in 1966, is a division of the NJ Department of State. The Council was established to encourage and foster public interest in the arts; enlarge public and private resources devoted to the arts; promote freedom of expression in the arts; and facilitate the inclusion of art in every public building in New Jersey. The Council receives direct appropriations from the State of New Jersey through a dedicated, renewable Hotel/Motel Occupancy fee, as well as competitive grants from the National Endowment for the Arts. To learn more about the Council, please visit www.artscouncil.nj.gov.
Northeast Document Conservation Center
Founded in 1973, the nonprofit Northeast Document Conservation Center serves museums, libraries, archives, and individuals nationwide. NEDCC provides conservation treatment for book and paper collections as well as digital imaging, audio preservation, assessments, consultations, training, and disaster assistance. To learn more, visit www.nedcc.org.
Performing Arts Alliance
The Performing Arts Alliance is the national policy advocate, leadership forum, and learning network for America’s nonprofit performing arts organizations, artists, and allies. Through legislative and grassroots action, PAA advocates for national policies that recognize, enhance, and foster the contributions the performing arts make to America. Coalition members work together towards a vision of a nation where the diverse ecology of the performing arts is deeply-valued and supported, adequately and equitably resourced, and where participation is accessible to all. For more information, please visit: www.ThePerformingArtsAlliance.org.
Western States and Territories Preservation Assistance Service
WESTPAS is an NEH-funded preservation information, education, and training program designed to extend the access lives of heritage collections, including performing arts libraries and archives, throughout the 14 U.S. Western and Pacific states and territories. WESTPAS also supports collaborative disaster planning and assistance. More information is available at www.westpas.org.