This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. CMMI 1841667. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of StEER and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

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StEER RESPONSE TO COVID-19

March 20, 2020

StEER Members,

 

We face presently a form of global disaster that is beyond the impacts of an earthquake, hurricane or tsunami. Just as StEER prioritizes the important work of first responders in our field deployments, we now must prioritize the important work of public health officials and healthcare workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 response. As such, StEER is indefinitely raising its response decision thresholds:

  1. Events that would traditionally warrant a Field Assessment Structural Team (FAST) will now be at most documented solely through a Preliminary Virtual Reconnaissance Report (PVRR) 

  2. Events that would traditionally warrant a PVRR will be documented by an Event Briefing

  3. Events that would traditionally warrant an Event Briefing will not receive any response

 

Further, in making decisions regarding when to return to its normal response decision thresholds and activate FASTs to collect field data, StEER will uphold the following principles: 

  1. StEER will follow the latest public health guidance in its responses and will conduct all responses in a manner consistent with public health recommendations and federal/state/local policies to limit the spread of COVID-19.

  2. StEER will continue to uphold the principle of Do No Harm: our responses will not endanger any person or organization with respect to health/personal safety, ability to provide essential services, and the necessity to care for affected communities. 

  3. StEER is further conscious of the time delays in global spread of COVID-19. Locations like China, Europe and the US will peak before other locations globally; thus StEER will assume a conservative approach to international responses, even if travel bans are lifted. 

 

Finally we appreciate that our members will have new modalities of life and work that will challenge us all, particularly those managing children or family members who become ill, all while adapting to evolving policies and norms in our workplaces. Thus, while we welcome and hope to continue to engage with you all through Slack as part of our Virtual Assessment Structural Teams (VAST), we further understand that your role in StEER may need to diminish in these trying times.

 

We wish you all peace and good health,

 

Tracy Kijewski-Correa

Khalid Mosalam

David O. Prevatt

Ian Robertson

David Roueche

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