As a member of my local CERT, I have trained and drilled on plans for running a shelter.

Our shelter rules are simple but strict: no pets of any kind, no violence of any kind, no drugs or alcohol, and keeping reasonable quiet hours. Thatís it ó we ask for names as people enter and leave, but we donít check IDs and we donít keep anyone from leaving who wants to.

While FEMA administers some aspects of the CERT program nobody on our team has ever seen or spoken to a FEMA employee ever; as one of the leaders on our team I would know.

Our communication with our stateís emergency management agency is very limited. Our countyís emergency management agency can request for our teamís activation and to implement our sheltering plan, a situation which has happened.