A crisis management plan is the process by which an organization responds with a sudden emergency situation. All officers and advisors should be aware of the crisis management plan. This plan should be discussed with every member during their membership orientation program. The following guidelines are to be used when a crisis occurs on or off chapter property. Some chapters may already have similar crisis management procedures, and this process supplements those procedures.
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- Remain calm.
- The president is in charge of any emergency situation, and he should consult other members who may posses more expertise or insight when making decisions.
- In the event that the president is absent, the next ranking officer assumes control.
- Dial 911. In nearly all cases the president should briefly and calmly explain the situation.
- Notify the chapter advisor and BOG chairman. The BOG chairman or advisor must contact the CEO or director of chapter services.
- Close the chapter house at once. Permit only members, alumni and appropriate officials to enter. Assign a few responsible members to calmly control access to the chapter house.
- Assemble the membership for a chapter meeting. Explain that there is an emergency and the house is closed.
- Do not discuss details, speculate on events or otherwise project consequences until the police, your advisor or school officials have arrived. Members are not to speak with anyone outside the chapter.
- The president is the official spokesperson for the chapter. If the news media should contact the chapter, only the president or the advisor should speak for the chapter. NO STATEMENT OR COMMENT SHOULD BE GIVEN. Release no names until an investigation is completed.
Serious Injury or Death of a Member
- Do not notify the parents. Medical personnel or the police will notify the family.
- Provide parental contact information to the authorities.
- Do not remove any personal items from the deceased member’s room.
- Do not let members enter the room. Temporarily move the deceased member’s roommate and keep the door locked, if possible.
- In an emergency, use extreme tact and caution in your actions and statements to members, the media and others. Where possible litigation may follow, be extremely cautious about jumping to conclusions or speculation.
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