Beginning today, The Ohio Council of Retail Merchants (OCRM) has initiated a partnership with the Ohio Department of Public Safety on the My Safer Ohio Business clearinghouse, in an effort to provide free resources and tools to businesses across the state.  The My Safer Ohio Business clearinghouse was developed as a way to make it easier for businesses, law enforcement and public safety organizations to connect with the purpose of building a stronger, more prepared and safer Ohio.

“The Ohio Council of Retail Merchants, representing over 7,500 members statewide, is excited about this partnership with the Ohio Department of Public Safety,” said Council President and CEO Gordon Gough.  “We feel that this resource will provide our members with critical information to not only help protect their businesses, but make it easier to access key state services.”

This partnership will open the door for businesses to have simple access to a wide variety of resources, safety tools, and information in order to aid in their development of emergency plans, training, communication and collaboration.  Programs such as the Ohio Public Private Partnership and the Emergency Partner Credentialing System, as well as a wide variety of templates, are now available for all businesses in one central location.

“Partnerships are key to success,” said ODPS Director John Born.  “The goal of this partnership is simple–create a stronger, safer and more resilient state of Ohio.”

Partner organizations will also have the ability to submit and share topical information and resources through the clearinghouse.  In the instance of natural disasters and crisis scenarios, the resources available through My Safer Ohio Business enable businesses to communicate with the proper authorities such as federal, state and local emergency management services and law enforcement agencies.

Details regarding some of the available services are listed below:

The Ohio Public Private Partnership (OP3) – OP3 is an initiative designed to provide current information and situational awareness on disaster prevention, response, and recovery efforts to state agency and business executives, allowing decisions and resources to best support the needs of the impacted community.

The Emergency Partnering Credentialing System (EPCS) – EPCS will provide an opportunity for businesses to obtain free electronic credentials to have access to disaster areas in order to ensure that employees are safe, commerce continues to move and life-sustaining supplies can be delivered.

Vulnerability Assessments – Businesses will now have the tools to preform vulnerability assessments and will have access to free emergency planning templates. Vulnerability assessments are key for business safety as it will help determine safety-gaps that businesses can target for improvements.

Private Investigator Security Guard Services (PISGS) – Private security plays a valuable role in protecting businesses. The PISGS, which certifies all private security statewide, will direct businesses on where to go to hire accredited private security.

Tabletop Exercise Materials – Tabletop exercises provide a unique training environment for all types of organizations to communicate and interact as if an emergency is happening. Example exercises and how to develop them are now available.

To access more resources and information, visit the My Safer Ohio Business clearinghouse by clicking here: additional information, please email Alex Boehnke, OCRM Manager of Public Affairs, or call 614-221-7833.