The Michigan State Police, Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division (MSP/EMHSD) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Target Corporation, paving the way for state officials to partner with Target in the aftermath of an emergency or disaster in Michigan. The MOU was signed on September 22 at a community preparedness event in Flint, Mich., sponsored by the MSP and Target.

The MOU outlines the collaborative partnership between the MSP/EMHSD and Target to effectively maximize resources and restore essential services during response and recovery efforts. Target assistance may include supplying basic necessities for citizens, providing resources to assist first responders and opening Target stores as soon as possible after an emergency.

“Partnering with members of the private sector, like Target, is a critical component of Michigan’s emergency management plan,” said Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue, director of the MSP and State Director of Emergency Management and Homeland Security. “With this partnership, Michigan’s response capabilities are greatly enhanced as Target has access to a wide-array of resources and can readily assist with other logistical issues during an emergency.”

As part of the MOU, the MSP/EMHSD will facilitate training for Target team members to join Citizen Corps as trained volunteers to assist first responders before, during and after an emergency. Michigan has one of the most robust Citizen Corps programs nationwide with nearly 90 local Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) ready to assist when needed.

The MSP/EMHSD and Target are also joining forces to help educate citizens about the need to prepare before an emergency strikes. During September, in recognition of National Preparedness Month, the MSP taught more than 100 children in Genesee County about being prepared with each participant receiving a basic emergency supply kit sponsored by Target. In addition, both organizations recently hosted a Prepare Fair at the Target store in Flint, Mich., to distribute free preparedness items to citizens in partnership with more than 20 first responder agencies.

“Signing this MOU with the state of Michigan contributes to the safety and security of communities throughout the state,” said Brad Brekke, vice president, Assets Protection, Target. “Preparing communities and our business for disasters is a top priority for Target. The more our guests and team members are prepared in advance of a disaster, the easier it is for communities to recover quickly.”