Crisis Communications Plan for Labette Center for Mental Health Services Inc.

Crisis Communications Plan Team

Department of Communication Studies

Fort Hays State University

Dr. Qingjiang Yao

Written July 22, 2013

Crystal Chang

Lulu Yu

Monica Simpson

 

 

 

 

Introduction

Labette Center for Mental Health Services, Inc., (LCMHS) is a licensed community mental health center serving Labette Country, Kansas. This is a not-for-profit organization, proud to serve the cities of Parsons, Oswego, Chetopa, Altamont, Bartlett, Edna, Labette, Mound Valley, and the communities of Angola, Dennis, Strauss and Valeda as well as outlying trade areas. The mission is to create hope and opportunities for life change by providing education, support, consolation, and therapeutic behavioral health services to the people and communities of Labette County.


 

Acknowledgements

By signing this statement, I verify that I have already read this crisis communication plan, and I am prepared to put it into effect.

__________________________________

Matthew M. Atteberry, Executive Director

(Signature and date)

__________________________________

Misti Mustain, Director of Clinical Programs

(Signature and date)

__________________________________

Sandra Dickerson, Director of Business and Financial Services

(Signature and date)

_________________________________

Monica Simpson, Public Relations Specialist

(Signature and date)

20130724163553

Rehearsal dates

Labette Center for Mental Health Services, Inc., (LCMHS) holds quarterly meetings that are scheduled to review all crises, corporate compliance and risk management plans. This would be the best time for the company to have rehearsal of the crisis communication plan take place. These meetings are held on the third Tuesday of each third month.

  • July 30th, 2013
  • October 22nd, 2013
  • January 27th. 2014
  • April 28th. 2014

Purpose and Objectives

To send a message regarding the crisis event in a way that mitigates the effects to the company.

To send a message in a way that communicates clear and accurate information to the publics.

List of key publics

  • Local health care agency
  • Clients
  • Regulatory Bodies- KDADS, Labette County Commission
  • Board of Directors
  • Staff
  • Local Schools
  • Public Health Department
  • Law Enforcement
  • County Disaster Team
  • General Public

Notifying publics

  • Local media personal sent via email:
    • Parsons Sun Newspaper
    • Taylor Newspaper
    • Pittsburg Morning Star Newspaper
    • Good News Newspaper
    • KOAM/Fox Television
    • KSN Television
    • KODF Television
    • KKOW Radio
    • KLKC Radio
    • KRPS Radio
    • City of Parsons KS
    • Parsons Chamber of Commence
    • Association of Community Mental Health Centers of Kansas (ACMHCK)
    • Local Health Care Agencies
      • Labette Health- Contact CEO by phone.
      • Labette County Health Department- Contact Director by phone
      • Other Health Care Agencies- Contact Director by phone
    • Regulatory Bodies (i. e. KDADS, Labette County Commission, Parsons City Commission)
      • Contact appointed agency personal, commissioners, and other necessary individuals by phone.
  1. Board of Directors:
  • Contact each of the 7 Board Members by phone.
    • Dee Bohnenblust- Chairperson
    • Linda Rife- Vice Chairperson
    • Nancy Boegel- Secretary
    • Kirk Wyckoff- Treasurer
    • Jack Flynn- Member at Large
    • Tommey McLarty- Member at Large

  • Staff: Staff will be contacted through dissemination of information passed to supervisors and then through the various levels. Depending on crisis, staff may be contacted or notified through the use of email, internal chat program, or social media.
  • Local Schools: Superintendents and Principals will be contacted by phone.

 

Identifying the crisis communications team

Matthew Atteberry, executive director

Misti Mustain, Director of Clinical Services

Sandra Dickerson, Director of Business and Financial Services

Monica Simpson, Public Relations and Marketing

Other individuals may be included, as required, dependent on the event.

 

Crisis Directory:

Name

Title

Telephone

Email

Dee Bohnenblust

Chairperson

Omitted

dee@lcmhs.com

Linda Rife

Vice Chairperson

Omitted

linda@lcmhs.com

Nancy Boegel

Secretary

Omitted

nancy@lcmhs.com

Kirk Wyckoff

Treasurer

Omitted

krik@lcmhs.com

Jack Flynn

Member at Large

Omitted

jack@lcmhs.com

Jean McCandless

Member at Large

Omitted

jean@lcmhs.com

Tommey McLarty

Member at Large

Omitted

tommey@lcmhs.com

Media Spokesperson

The main spokesperson is Matthew Atteberry, the executive director of Labette Center for Mental Health Services.  As the Executive Director, he has the authority to make decisions and can be accessible throughout the crisis. The backup spokespersons are Sandra Dickerson, the director of business and financial services and spokesperson Misti Mustain, the director of clinical services.

Emergency personnel and local officials

  • Jodi Scmidt, CEO – Labette Health (local hospital)
  • Debbie Baugher, Director – Labette County Health Department
  • Scott Goforth, Chief of Police – Parsons Police Department
  • Michael Shields, Chief of Police – Altamont Police Department
  • George Elliot, Chief of Police – Oswego Police Department
  • Robert Simms, Sheriff – Labette County Sheriff’s Department

Key Media

Newspapers

  • Parsons Sun Newspaper from Parsons Kansas

news@parsonssun.com

620-421-3770

  • Taylor Newspaper

Rena Russell – Labette Avenue Editor

620-795-2550

labetteavenue@taylornews.org

  • Pittsburg Morning Sun Newspaper

Andrew Nash

Andrew.nash@morningsun.net

701 N. Locust St. Pittsburg, KS 66762

  • Good News Newspaper

June Freisberg – Editor

editor@goodnews.press.com

 

TV

  • KOAM/Fox Television – newsdesk@koamtv.com
  • KSN Television – sprice@ksn16.tv, ckendall@ksn16.tv
  • KODE Television – jkendall@kode12.tv

Radio

  • KKOW Radio – gsmith@ami-pittsburg.com
  • KLKC Radio – anettet@skilonline.com
  • KRPS Radio – krps@pittstate.edu

Others

  • City of Parsons KS

City Hall, 112 South 17th Street, Parsons, KS 67357

  • Parsons Chamber of Commerce

506 Main Street, Parsons, KS 67357

  • Association of Community Mental Health Centers of Kansas

534 S Kansas Suite 300 Topeka, KS 66603

Spokespersons for related organizations

  • Labette Health (local hospital) – Jodi Scmidt, CEO
  • Labette County Health Department – Debbie Baugher, Director
  • Parsons Police Department – Scott Goforth, Chief of Police
  • Altamont Police Department – Michael Shields, Chief of Police
  • Oswego Police Department – George Elliot, Chief of Police
  • Labette County Sheriff’s Department – Robert Simms, Sheriff
  • ACMHCK (Association of Community Mental Health Centers of Kansas) – Michael Hammond, Executive Director
  • KDADS (Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services) – Designated by the State
  • State of Kansas – Designated by the State

Crisis Communications Control Center

  • 1st Option:  Main building located at 1730 Main Parsons, KS  67357
  • 2nd Option: Adult Case Management Building located at 906 S. 13th Parsons, KS 67357
  • 3rd Option: Children’s Case Management Building located at 7 Katy Drive Parsons, KS 67357
  • 4th Option: Children’s Psychosocial building located at 400 N. Central Parsons, KS  67357

Equipment and supplies

Recommended supplies in the crisis control room:

1 Television

4 Chairs

1 Long desk

4 Computers

Perhaps manual typewriters in case power is a problem

1 Bulletin board

1 Computer printer

4 Cellular phones

1 Map of the plant or crisis area

Battery-powered lamps and flashlights

5 Pens

5 Pencils

4 Telephone directories and contact lists

4 Media directories

4 Copies of crises plans

Food and beverages

1 Copying machine

Pre – gathered information

Safety precautions: Employee safety is not only important for himself/herself and their families, but it is also important for the organizations. Therefore, every employee needs to foster good habits and attitudes for work. Please read the safety precautions and learn from it.

  • Confidentiality in office: Avoid taking confidential documents to public places. Employees who know about the documents should avoid talking about it in publics. Have passwords or codes on the documents.
  • Confidentiality in production area: The last one who leaves the area should turn off all the equipment and make sure the door is locked. Be careful when using electrical source. No smoking in working area.
  • Bad weather: Follow the instruction of supervisors. Stay away from windows, doors and do not walk outdoors.
  • Emergency treatment: All accidents that occur at work must be reported immediately. Leave the dangerous area from the nearest safe exit. The first thing should be done after accident is to rescue the victims; take measures to prevent the accident from spreading.

Location of offices:

1730 Belmont, Parsons, KS. Phone: 620-421-3770. Alternative phone number: 620-421-2937.

Fill-in-the blanks news release:

News Release

For Immediate Release

Date:          

Contact: (name/phone/title).

(Full name and title of victim) suffered (the crisis/accident) at Labette Center for Mental Health Services. She/he was (age).

Further details will be released by (full name and title) at (time of news conference) at Labette Center for Mental Health Services, 1730 Belmont, Parsons, MAP

Key Messages:

  • Basic Statement (Any Situation):
    • Labette Center for Mental Health Services provides a full range of mental health and substance abuse services to clients of all ages, and works closely with local agencies to provide the best care possible.
    • The professionals at LCMHS work tirelessly to create hope and opportunities for life change by providing education, support, consultation, and therapeutic behavioral health services to the people and communities of Labette County.
    • Active Shooter Event (Internal):
      • Labette Center for Mental Health Services is devastated by the events which have taken place within our Center.
      • We are working with area officials and agencies to best care for our staff, clients and community.
    • Active Shooter Event (External):
      • Labette Center for Mental Health Services is devastated by the events which have taken place within our Center.
      • We are working with area officials and agencies to best care for our staff, clients and community.
      • Our staff will be available to assist with the needs of community members.
    • Bankruptcy:
      • Labette Center for Mental Health Services is an established non-profit organization that has been providing services to Labette County for over 30 years.
      • Labette Center remains dedicated to our community, clients and staff.
    • Death of Key Management Staff:
      • It is with great sadness that Labette Center for Mental Health Services needs to inform the community that (insert name, title) has passed away.
      • We express our deepest condolences to the family and friends of (insert name), as well as to the work family here at Labette Center.
      • Labette Center will stand with our employees during this time of grief.
      • As we work through this loss, Labette Center will be active in filling the space left by (insert name).  In the interim, (insert name of temporary replacement) will step-forward to handle the job duties until a permanent replacement solution is determined.
    • Major Building Damage:
      • Labette Center for Mental Health Services will continue to see clients at our (insert designated location – see company crisis plan) location.
      • Please be assured that Labette Center will work diligently to continue to serve our clients as best possible under the current circumstances.
    • HIPAA Breach:
      • Labette Center for Mental Health Services has taken action to rectify the situation at hand.
      • We sincerely regret that this occurrence has taken place and will work towards finding ways to ensure that this incident does not take place in the future.
      • Labette Center would like to express our sincere apology to those who have been affected and provide reassurance that we are working on a solution to this issue.
    • Sexual Misconduct by Employee:
      • Labette Center for Mental Health Services maintains that we strive to protect the identity and image of those we serve.
      • Labette Center for Mental Health Services has taken action to resolve this issue and expresses our apologies to those affected through the actions of our (former) employee.
      • It is the policy of Labette Center to have no tolerance for sexual misconduct by our employees.  The community can be assured the situation is being handled in a decisive and appropriate manner.
    • Fraud:
      • Labette Center for Mental Health Services is actively seeking to resolve the issue.
      • Labette Center does not tolerate illegal activities taking place by or involving our staff.
      • We will be finding ways to resolve the issue internally with the hope of the situation causing the least amount of disruption to our clients and staff possible.

Website:

Labette Center for Mental Health Services provides a website with the address www.lcmhs.com.  This website is maintained internally by Monica M. Simpson, Public Relations Specialist.  Hosting and technical support for this website is provided by Tom Schwarz, Lookinglass Sales & Services.

Contact information for website:

Blogs and Social Media:

Labette Center for Mental Health provides a variety of social media sites for the public to access information from.  All sites listed below are maintained by Monica M. Simpson, Public Relations Specialist.  Simpson can be contacted at 620-421-3370 or monica@lcmh.com.  Alternate phone number is 620-778-2313.

Trick Questions:

  • Speculative
    • If someone in the agency had been armed, would they have been able to stop the shooter?
    • If the shooter had received services from Labette Center, could this have been avoided?
    • If the company had implemented layoffs, could this have been avoided?
    • Leading
      • It is correct that the shooter was a client of your facility, right?
      • There were clients trapped in the building at the time of the damage, correct?
      • (Insert name) had been accused of sexual misconduct in the past, right?
      • (Insert name) had previous driving violations, correct?

 

  • Loaded
    • Isn’t it true that you knew the company was in financial trouble, yet did nothing to fix the situation?
    • Isn’t it true that you knew (insert name) had been accused of sexual misconduct, yet employed them anyway?
    • Naïve
      • What knowledge do you have about mental health issues?
      • What position did (insert name) hold at the time of his/her death?
      • What is considered confidential information?
    • False
      • You had specific knowledge the shooter intended to take this action, correct?
      • The company refused to cut back on spending, which would have allowed them avoid bankruptcy, correct?
      • The company new (insert name) was committing fraud, but did not take action until it became public, correct?
    • Know-it-all
      • We already have all the information needed, but would like for you to wrap up the facts.

 

  • Accusatory
    • You could have stopped this tragedy from happening, couldn’t you?
    • You had the information to fix the situation, but did not do so, did you?
    • Multi-Part
      • The shooter had been a client of your facility, correct?  And your staff knew that this person was having violent thoughts?
    • Jargonistic
      • The shooter was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia along with substance use and was a client in your duel diagnosis community support services program, correct?
      • A malfunction occurred in your EMR system regarding the Axis I diagnostic information, correct?
    • Chummy
      • So, friend, off the record, you knew (insert name) was having sexual relations with their clients right?
    • Labeling
      • Would you say the employee was “stressed” due to work conditions when the breach of confidentiality occurred?
      • Would you say the employee was in financial “despair” when he/she committed fraud?
    • Good-Bye
      • By the way, the shooters family reported they received services from you.  Is that correct?
      • One last thing, could you have prevented the shooter from committing this act?
      • By the way, did you know (insert name) had previously been accused of sexual misconduct?

List of Prodromes

  • Active Shooter Event (Inside/Outside Agency):
    • Internal – Agitated employees, tension in the work place, tension with clientele
    • External – Economic difficulty in the community, lack of work available, deterioration of education system, deterioration of legal system
    • Bankruptcy
      • Financial difficulties in the company
      • Inability to meet budget guidelines
      • Increased cost of providing services with a decrease in funding
    • HIPAA Breach
      • Discourse amoung employees
      • Lack of training
      • Noticeable increase in employees openly discussing confidential information
    • Sexual Misconduct by Employee
      • Increased flirtation
      • Increased talking or discussing of the opposite sex

 

List of Related URL’s

Evaluation

  • Evaluations will be conducted with the use of Survey Monkey.  This is the standard for which Labette Center for Mental Health Services conducts evaluations.  Evaluations will be sent to management and crisis communication team members.
  • Questions for evaluation will include, but are not limited to:
    • Was the crisis addressed in an appropriate amount of time?
    • Were there open communications with employees and key publics?
    • Did employees feel valued by the company?
    • Did key publics feel informed about the crisis?
    • Were media relations open and timely?
    • Was the employee response positive?
    • Was the public response positive?
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