Monday, June 03, 2013

Citizen Angel Fernandez Donates Training to Middletown Emergency Management
Office of Emergency Management Deputy (OEM) Chief Angel Fernandez's company Eleven Charlie LLC donated $10K worth of Training to Middletown Emergency Management this year.  Eleven Charlie LLC specializes in security and anti terrorism training and planning. The training included over 40 hours of classroom instruction and hands on type training. Participants received tactical training from  US Navy Seals as part of the course. Fernandez and Chief of OEM Bruce Driska are responsible of the operation of the department to respond to any emergency of man made or natural disaster. The Emergency Management Department of the City of Middletown is part of the Rapid Deployment Team of the Mobile Field Hospital for Connecticut Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. OEM provides additional resources to police,fire, and public works when the need arises.for operation of equipment. The City has always been well protected by police and fire.Fernandez saw a need for more training for the volunteer department as far as emergency support,, and there being none funded, stepped up to the plate to see to it that proper training was available.
Now that is being a pro active member of the Middletown Community Fernandez! Well done!

How Cuts in Emergency Management effects Public Safety: Emergency Management took a big cut in its operation costs in the budget proposed by Mayor Drew. Even more cuts were made in the budget presented by the Democratic Majority of the Common Council, which were adopted. Vaccinations for staff against communicable diseases they are likely to encounter in emergency situations were nixed. While the Office of Emergency Management has a chief, Bruce Driska, he must follow orders of the Mayor. It is the mayor who is ultimately in charge of operations & distribution of city resources during an emergency like a blizzard for example, with the chief and deputy chief as his advisers. The chief and deputy chief make suggestions for the budget, but like the other departments, the mayor can choose whether or not to include these items when he writes the budget presented to the Common Council. 
What about the safety of Middletown schools?:Private defense companies are in high demand through out the state right now in school districts looking for ways to improve security  in the wake of the Sandy Hook Tragedy. Middletown Public Schools has had emergency plans since the 9/11 Terrorist Attacks and has and always will have the full support of local police and fire. Many Middletown parents are asking for improved additional specialized security which doesn't just include cameras, additional local police at schools (currently done by one officer for all schools), but also specialized training of staff by private security companies in tactical planning.

A local parent, who asked not to be named," The kids are told to hide under their desks should an intruder enter, to me that is counter productive. More [security measures] should have been in the  superintendent's school budget."

Danbury, for example, hired private security to protect/patrol elementary schools at the request of parents. The private security was an addition to regular police.

Why the donation of Training comes in the nick of time:Training and other equipment provided to Emergency Management staff was not provided for under the Drew 2013 budget which passed the Common Council in early May. The budget, which included cuts that effect public safety during emergencies, raised taxes, and included an increase the amount of the stipend given to each councilmember, passed  7-5 with Republicans and 1 Democrat voting against it. The donated training that took  place prior to the budget vote certainly would not have been possible as part of the adopted 2013 fiscal budget. 
Read about what the training entailed here on Patch

Fernandez teaching "Intro to Terrorism"
a class about defense against terrorism
About Fernandez: Angel Fernandez studied Public Safety Administration and Criminal Justice at Central Connecticut State University. Fernandez is a veteran, having served in combat during wartime.  Fernandez was enlisted in the U.S. Navy from  1989 to 2007. Upon retirement from the Navy in 2007, he received the J. Edgar Hoover award. Fernandez has young children in the Middletown public school system, and is the father of a soldier currently serving overseas.

 Fernandez gave a humble response to why he donated his services," [We] are just doing the right thing for the guys at OEM. We have been working for over a year  providing standard training for them." 

Fernandez taught the OEM staff a course called Intro to Terrorism. Fernandez said 
"It is important teaching Public Safety Personnel how terrorism is organized and their ideology. It is imperative to teach personnel about situation awareness."

Fernandez is no stranger to volunteering. He recently helped out with a Free NRA Gun Safety Class for youth held at Kings 33 Defense in Southington on May 26th.

Pistol Permits by L.I.S.A  provided instruction. The session also included discussions with parents on how to talk to their kids about gun violence and safety.

At the Free NRA Youth Gun Safety Class.
Lisa Mezzio & Angel Fernandez.

Hosted by Kings 33 in Southington. 

photo credit. L. Mezzio

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