Continuity of Operations (COOP) Programs

COOP Resources

Continuity Evaluation Tool

Federal Continuity Directives

FEMA Devolution of Operations Plan

Pandemic Influenza

COOP Multi-Year Strategy and Program Management Plan

COOP Assessment

Federal Preparedness Circular

Vital Records


FEMA’s Office of National Security Coordination (ONSC) serves as lead COOP planning agent for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). During the past two years, ONSC, in coordination with the DHS COOP Working Group, has developed a DHS-wide COOP plan and component-level plans for the 10 DHS Headquarters offices and 12 major organizational elements, creating templates and working side-by-side with COOP planners from each organization.

ONSC has also developed a DHS COOP Guidance Manual that outlines DHS COOP policies, procedures, and planning requirements. In addition, ONSC has participated in review sessions during the 2004 Government Accountability Office (GAO) audit of DHS COOP plans, providing assistance to individual COOP planners and documenting areas where improvements were needed.

Because COOP plans are living documents, ONSC continues to refine and improve the DHS plans to reflect lessons learned through both training exercises and real-world events. DHS COOP plans are continuously revised and updated to ensure that essential DHS functions will be maintained under all circumstances.



The FEMA Headquarters COOP Plan documents the overarching strategy, policies, and procedures of the FEMA Headquarters COOP program. Although designed with FEMA in mind, the Plan may also be used as a template to develop guidance and programs throughout the interagency COOP community.

As components of the larger Headquarters plan, each headquarters office, administration, and division (O/A/D) has prepared its own COOP implementation plan which parallels the larger plan’s structure while documenting COOP information and activities specific to that O/A/D. This interlocking design enables centralized control by the FEMA Headquarters COOP program, but permits details and changes to be maintained by the O/A/D.

ONSC takes the lead in coordinating with each O/A/D on development of its implementation plan. Its responsibilities include ensuring that plans are current, contain all required information, and are consistent with the Headquarters COOP Plan and other implementation plans.

This interlocking COOP plan design and process has not only created a viable COOP capability for the FEMA Headquarters facility, but serves as a model for other Departments and Agencies. Over the next year, ONSC will document its processes and lessons learned and make them available for use by all members of the COOP community.

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Last Modified: Wednesday, 07-May-2008 10:48:41 EDT