We Are Here to Help
CDRO is a non-governmental not-for-profit federally incorporated organization supporting municipal, county, regional, provincial and First Nations emergency management.
Membership is a dedicated group of incident managers, emergency managers and public safety professionals from varied disciplines, who are a complementary asset to Ontario’s public safety net.
In doing so, we will build a more resilient Ontario, one community at a time, in a fiscally-responsible and sustainable manner.
We are prepared to provide effective and efficient emergency response/management support. We can assist you with a framework and facilitation of integrated planning, coordination and support to ensure that the appropriate level of response (personnel and equipment) is brought to bear, in a timely manner, to mitigate the situation and initiate recovery.
Community Disaster Response Ontario (CDRO) has a unique story in how it came into fruition.
Two good friends and emergency managers in their own portfolios; Mark Evans with The Salvation Army’s Emergency Disaster Services and Jim Montgomery with the City of Ottawa, Office of Emergency Management, had an idea.
In October 2019 while attending the Disaster and Emergency Management Conference (DEMCON) in Toronto, they had lunch together, to further the idea. An hour break from the conference turned into an afternoon discussion of what gap would this new organization mitigate.
Their concept developed into a question; “how do we bring together emergency managers in Ontario to support communities in times of crisis.” The theme is validated from the Elliott Lake Inquiry when Justice Belanger’s report in 2014 with recommendation 2.4 stated:
“On request, the province should make incident support teams available to incident commanders.”
Mark and Jim left the conference and committed to continue exploring the idea and engage the Ontario emergency management community to validate the need. Throughout 2020 they continued to pursue the idea through engagement of other emergency managers, in the fall they held a “whiteboard session” to develop the idea at a strategic level. Through discussions with Emergency Management Ontario (EMO), they validated the gap of incident support teams available to incident commanders, continued to exist.
The strategic discussions led to the idea be grounded in the philosophy as a not-for-profit non-governmental organization, with three distinct capabilities and capacities;
Response – the ability to support incident commanders with strategic level expertise through incident management teams engagement and/or deployment.
Consultation – the ability to support emergency managers with emergency management program subject matter expertise.
Training – the ability to support emergency management programs, private and public, with access to state-of-the-art, current, and relevant emergency response / management training.
In the fall of 2020, EMO and the Ontario emergency management community supported the idea through continual engagement to the point that the idea had to develop into reality.
In early 2021, EMO posed the question to CDRO, “Can you deploy an Incident Management Team to support the spring freshet northern Ontario evacuations?” In simple terms this was a defining moment that validated our vision.
Efforts focused on developing the idea into the not-for-profit non-governmental organization through utilization of lawyers, accountants, and business expertise. On April 6th, 2021, CDRO was issued a Certificate of Incorporation under the Canada Not-for-profit Corporation Act.
Mark and Jim continued all out efforts to develop CDRO and recruit emergency management expertise to fulfill a roster for potential deployment. CDRO was not utilized for the 2021 northern Ontario evacuations, that gave them breathing room to enhance their state of readiness with capability and capacity through further development of a roster.
On June 29th, 2021, CDRO signed a formal agreement with the Ontario Solicitor General for Emergency Services, with the objective of:
The Ministry wishes to ensure that it has sufficient support in planning and coordinating a provincial response to an emergency evacuation of First Nation communities requiring contingency evacuation arrangements.
CDRO was deployed on July 6th,2021 to the City of Greater Sudbury with an Incident Management Team to support Emergency Management Ontario with the strategic level management, through an Emergency Operations Centre, with the evacuation of five hundred residents of Pikangikum First Nations community. The deployed was continuous 24/7/365 till the July 30th, 2021.
CDRO is a proud member of the Ontario Non-Governmental Alliance and continues to grow and serve Ontario’s emergency management community and its residents, businesses, and visitors.