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Reminding Residents 'If You See Something, Say Something'

News Date: 
Tuesday, May 23, 2017 - 15:30

The Cook County Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (DHSEM) and the City of Chicago Office of Emergency Management and Communications (OEMC) are asking residents to report suspicious activity and packages to authorities. Both departments stress the importance of the “If You See Something, Say Something”™ anti-terrorism public awareness campaign, urging residents to report any suspicious activity by calling 855-RPRT-2-S4, the official local number of the campaign. This extends the inter-agency campaign and partnership that has been ongoing for the last two years.

However, if there is an immediate threat to life or property, the public is urged to call 9-1-1 or report it to on-site security.

“While there are no known credible threats to Chicago, we are reminding residents that they are critical partners in the fight against terrorism,” said Alicia Tate-Nadeau, executive director of OEMC. “Law enforcement can't be everywhere all the time. Residents are our boots on the ground and we must work together to ensure the safety of our communities.”

“People become more aware of their surroundings in the immediate aftermath of attacks both worldwide and here in the U.S., but we have seen time and time again that we must never let our guard down,” said Mark Edingburg, interim executive director of the DHSEM. "Don't just walk past a suspicious package and don't assume someone else will report suspicious activity."

OEMC and the DHSEM launched the “If You See Something, Say Something”™ campaign in partnership with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in July 2015. Locally they have partnered with colleges and the faith-based community to help promote the program to residents in schools, at events and at other public and private spaces around the community. Additionally, the City and County launched a radio and digital campaign to reinforce the reporting number to Chicago and Cook County residents so they know to use it to report suspicious activity.

Beginning May 29  through September 17, residents and visitors will see an increased visibility of the "If You See Something, Say Something”™ materials at O'Hare International and Chicago Midway airports, on billboards leading into the city, on transit buses driving around the city, and in movie theaters. Additionally, digital ads and banners will appear on a variety of digital media platforms.

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The Office of Emergency Management and Communications was established in 1995 to coordinate the City’s delivery of Police, Fire and Emergency Medical Services resources. OEMC operates Chicago’s public safety communications system, manages emergency situations and coordinates major events, 3-1-1 and 9-1-1 Communications Operations. For more information visit cityofchicago.org/oemc or www.facebook/coemc.

The Cook County Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management integrates first responders, their departments and resources from 134 Cook County municipalities, and serves as the central agency in Cook County for coordinating efforts to prevent, protect against, mitigate the effects of, respond to, and recover from all incidents, whether man-made or natural. For more information, visit our website at www.cookcountyhomelandsecurity.org