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What is the extent of the authority that is vested in the ODPM?
The ODPM, established by Cabinet in 2005, is responsible for leading the national effort in protecting public health and safety; restoring essential government services and providing emergency relief to those affected severely by hazards. The agency is the principal player in leading the nation’s effort in preparing for, responding to and recovering from disasters. By its very mandate the ODPM is committed to formulating an all-hazard approach to emergency/risk management. This all- hazard approach encompasses a comprehensive framework that includes mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery. The ODPM is also responsible for mobilizing all the key players, such as the Protective Services, all Government Ministries and Agencies, Non Governmental Organisations, Community and Faith- Based Organisations, and resources to bring about the best possible approach to reducing the loss of life and damage to property resources. Additionally, it is also one of three sub-regional focal points in the Caribbean region. The four sub-regional focal points are Trinidad, Barbados, Antigua and Jamaica and each is responsible for territories which are geographically close to them.