STARRS is a consortium of key public and private organizations that has been organized to address critical security needs in the region. East-West Gateway is the fiscal agent for STARRS. The partnership between East-West Gateway and STARRS enables professionals in many key fields relating to emergency management to work together to better prepare the region to prevent and respond to natural disasters and terrorist acts, and provides for accountability to the region’s chief local elected officials.
The geographic divisions in the St. Louis region require that homeland security responses be carefully planned by a collaborative organization that spans the area’s fragmented political landscape. In addition, the complexity of a regional response to a myriad of potential threats, whether naturally occurring or intentional, requires the involvement of a wide variety of disciplines – healthcare, public safety, public health, emergency response, communications, and many others. It also requires a partnership between public and private sectors, since many key assets are privately owned and operated. Our mission for Fiscal Year 2015 is to provide the organizational framework for STARRS to accomplish the plans and develop the systems that are necessary for an effective regional security response, and to support, through capital purchases and training, the many agencies that will ultimately be responsible for response to major incidents and disasters. The most significant projects that will be part of the agency’s work in FY 2015 are the update of the St. Louis Regional Homeland Security Strategy, the Multi Year Training & Exercise Plan, the Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Analysis and completion of the Mass Fatality Resource Coordination Plan, and the St. Louis Regional Digital Microwave Network.
Urban Area Security Initiative – The Council receives funding from Department of Homeland Security/Federal Emergency Management Agency (DHS/FEMA) to administer and implement the Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) in the St. Louis region. The work under this grant includes updating the St. Louis Regional Emergency Resource Coordination plan for the St. Louis metropolitan area, providing support to critical incident response teams and Citizen Preparedness programs, supporting information and intelligence sharing amount agencies, and supporting crossjurisdictional cooperation among emergency services providers. This grant also supports the design and installation of the St. Louis Regional Digital Microwave System, the purchase of equipment to support mass casualty capability, disaster preparedness and response, and training exercises.
Bioterrorism Preparedness for Hospitals – EWG receives funding from the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services/U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness & Response (MoDHSS/ASPR) to support hospitals in the St. Louis region in planning, preparing for, and responding to all-hazard events. Staff supports plans for enhancing hospitals' surge capacity in mass fatality and patient care during a mass casualty incident. Other efforts include enhancement of hospitals' capacity to: treat patients with major trauma or burns, decontamination of patients and personnel, distribution of medicine and medical supplies during biological events, and interoperable communications capability.