Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
+ WHAT IS THE ER-ITN ACCESS PROGRAM?
The ER-ITN Access Program is an online, web-based system configured specifically to enable coordination and verification for organizations and their personnel who require reentry/transit into controlled areas after an emergency crisis or disaster.
- Enables the coordination of information required by the State Operating Procedure (JSOP) to support the approval process for granting reentry and/or transit privileges.
- Is an easy-to-use system for orgs (businesses, government, emergency responders, etc.) to manage and share reentry/transit approval status for their essential personnel.
- Enables authorized personnel to print current Vehicle Access Placards and Letters of Access for reentry/recovery.
- Is a tool for checkpoint operators (e.g. law enforcement) to uniformly verify identity and approval for reentry/transit.
- Utilizes an ALL HAZARDS, ALL EVENTS, ALL COMMS approach that supports operations for any event or communications condition.
+ WHAT IS A VEHICLE PLACARD?
A Vehicle Placard is the standard reentry document used throughout the ER-ITN Access Program. This document is standardized throughout multiple states and is able to communicate the necessary reentry information for critical personnel through either a visual approval or other on-site verification process.
This reentry docuemnt is available in both a paper form as well as a mobile form.
+ WHAT ACCESS TIER SHOULD I REGISTER UNDER?
Tier ER – Immediate / Unrestricted Access (Color Code = Red) Immediate and unrestricted access will be granted to:
- Parish / Municipal Fire and EMS
- Local, State and Federal Law Enforcement, Homeland Security and Emergency Management
- Military (including National Guard and Coast Guard)
- All other Emergency Response Personnel providing support of CI / KR (based upon the discretion of local authorities)
Tier 1 – Response Support (Color Code = Blue)
- Critical Infrastructure / Key Resources Rapid Response Teams and Subject Matter Experts including, but not limited to, municipal utilities, public works, public health, water, lighting, transportation and communications (at the discretion of local authorities, with preregistered and prequalified CI / KR contracted to support Tier ER as first priority)
- Personnel on the staff of Hospitals with Emergency Departments
- Security Personnel (preregistered / prequalified)
- Official Damage Assessment Teams (FEMA, State, and Local)
- Critical Infrastructure / Key Resources Damage Assessment Teams
- Other designated personnel at the discretion of local authorities (i.e. First Aid, EMACs, Mutual Aid, CERT, etc.)
Tier 2 – Recovery Support (Color Code = Green)
- Relief Workers
- Healthcare personnel not included in Tier 1
- Animal Rescue, Research & Care Organizations
- Other CI /KR and business operators considered critical to recovery efforts (based upon the Discretion of Local authorities)
- Other personnel approved at the discretion of the local authorities
Tier 3 – Rebuild / Repopulate (Color Code = Grey)
- All other business operators and residents (as appropriate, subject to safety issues)
+ WHAT IS THE ROLE OF THE ER-ITN ACCESS PROGRAM WITHIN THE STATE/COUNTY?
The capability to safely, securely, and effectively enable the entry/transit of critical personnel after a disaster or crisis is crucial to the community’s ability to recover. This includes both ensuring the correct personnel are admitted quickly, while also preventing the wrong (i.e. unapproved) individuals to gain entry.
Based on a national template created by the US Gulf Coast states, State Law Enforcement and Emergency Management have/are adopting Statewide standards (Joint Standard Operating Procedures (JSOP)) to enable the coordinated reentry/transit of critical personnel.
Per State laws, the local County/Parish (often via the local Emergency Manager) determines the “Who” can reenter and the “When” entry is authorized. Law Enforcement’s role is to facilitate this via the “How” at established checkpoints. State (and Federal) authorities are supporting organizations to this process.
The ER-ITN is the system selected to support the defined standards (JSOP) across all states nationally. States are enabled in the system once the State standard is approved and implemented. The ER-ITN is only a tool used by Local Emergency Management, Law Enforcement, and Organizations to coordinate and facilitate reentry/transit. Decision making authority ALWAYS rests with the organization defined by State Law and/or the State’s Emergency Response Plan.
+ WHO USES THE ER-ITN ACCESS PROGRAM?
The ER-ITN is available to all parties involved in registering, approving and verifying essential personnel for the purpose of reentry/transit:
- The reentry/transit ‘rules’, established by the State-instruction (e.g. JSOP) and local Parish/County leadership, are defined, managed and published within the ER-ITN by the authorized parties (Emergency Managers).
- Approved organizations (Critical Infrastructure, Support and Recovery Personnel, Businesses and Volunteer Organizations, etc.) register their personnel and ‘verify’ roles and employment data to enable reentry.
- Organizations can print Vehicle Access Placards and Letters of Access documents directly from the ER-ITN for their personnel.
- Checkpoints (Police, Sheriffs, State Police, National Guard, etc.) can visually verify the Vehicle Placard or Letter of Access, and use web browser verification at Checkpoints via mobile or laptop computers, and handheld tablets or smartphones.
+ IS THERE A FEE FOR USING THE ER-ITN ACCESS PROGRAM?
The ER-ITN is provided free to Law Enforcement, Emergency Management, and First Responder organizations as an additional tool to make sure our most crucial responding resources can enter without delay.
Critical infrastructure and commercial businesses are asked to pay a small annual fee for each essential person enrolled to help defray costs of the program. Fee structures are discounted based on many factors including localized reentry criteria, number of personnel enrolling for the organization, type or role of the organization, etc. Fees per enrollee are from $9-36 dollars depending on the size of the organization and amount of personnel enrolled. Registrations are for 1 year. Registration in the system enables entry (assuming State/Local rules are met) anywhere the ER-ITN is in use across the nation.
+ WHAT CAN I DO TO BE PREPARED?
Register your Organization and Essential Personnel. Organizations desiring to be better prepared for the hurricane season should be registered with the ER-ITN to establish their organization, enroll their essential personnel, and receive initial training. Once completed, the organizations can print authorized Vehicle Access Placards and Letters of Access as needed. When executed well ahead of an event the overall process can be completed in a matter of days. Adding, modifying or removing personnel, as needed over time, can be completed in minutes.
+ DOES THE ER-ITN ACCESS PROGRAM PROTECT MY PRIVACY?
The ER-ITN protects the privacy of all registered organizations and personnel in three ways:
- The ER-ITN follows all Federal and State-level Privacy laws and regulations to ensure any collected data is protected and secured. Data and approval status is only available for viewing with organizations authorized to facilitate and/or approve reentry/transit (e.g. law enforcement/emergency management)
- Data registered within the ER-ITN remains the property of the registering organization and the individuals themselves always. Use is only authorized for reentry/transit approval. Data will never be shared or used for any other purpose, nor will it be provided externally to any party for any reason.
- Data registered within the ER-ITN is limited only to public information that the individual would use to obtain reentry/transit. (e.g. Driver’s License status, Employment Status/Badge) No additional or extraneous information is collected and all collected status information is securely stored using US Government approved encryption protocols.
+ DO I NEED TO BUY ANY NEW HARDWARE OR SOFTWARE TO USE THE ER-ITN ACCESS PROGRAM?
No. The ER-ITN is an online, web-based solution that allows all information to be entered and accessed via a web browser. Checkpoint operators are can access the web verification screens via the Mobile Data Terminals in their vehicles, laptop or tablet computers or mobile handheld devices.
+ WHERE IS THE ER-ITN ACCESS PROGRAM USED?
The ER-ITN provides support at the state, county/parish, and local levels throughout Louisiana, Mississippi, and several supporting jurisdictions throughout the Gulf Coast.
+ DO I NEED TO SUBMIT PERSONNEL IN EACH STATE FOR ACCESS TO THAT AREA?
No. Organizations register once. The ER-ITN Access Program evaluates personnel against all available areas for approval. The Organization uses the web-portal to review status of access across the system and resolve any issues (e.g. data/approval required for specific areas) to ensure their personnel are pre-approved and ready for any emergency crisis. The Organization can print Vehicle Access Placards and Letters of Access per the required format for each area personnel may require entry/transit.