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Michael Drewniak
Kevin Roberts
Tuesday, September 25, 2012

First Lady Mary Pat Christie Supports
“Text First. Talk Second” Initiative

First Spouses Participate in Awareness Campaign During National Preparedness Month

Trenton, NJ – As part of National Preparedness Month, First Lady Mary Pat Christie is joining other First Spouses to encourage their residents to “Text First. Talk Second” when checking in with family and friends after a disaster. The awareness campaign is being spearheaded by Alabama First Lady Dianne Bentley in cooperation with the Safe America Foundation.

“After an emergency or disaster like Hurricane Irene, it’s only natural to want to let loved ones know you’re okay,” said First Lady Mary Pat Christie. “During National Preparedness Month and every month, it’s important to empower your family members with a text message system for their safety and peace of mind should an emergency occur. ‘Text First. Talk Second’ is a critical element of family preparedness planning and I am proud to participate in this effort with other First Spouses.”

During an emergency, most non-essential calls shut down wireless phone service and prevent 911 calls from being communicated to emergency personnel. Many preparedness experts agree that during an emergency and its immediate aftermath, communicating by text messaging is the best alternative.

“Now is the time to take a moment to sit down with your family to conduct an emergency text message drill. It’s an easy three-part process that consists of sending, receiving and confirming your text message,” added Mrs. Christie.

Follow these simple directions:

  • First, send text message to a family member during the exercise: “I M OK”/ “R U OK”
  • Family member receives message
  • Family member responds with: “I M OK”

September is National Preparedness Month, a time to increase public awareness about the importance of preparing for emergencies at home, work, and school. For additional information about preparedness tips for all types of emergencies, visit www.ready.nj.gov.