COSTEP MA is excited to announce a new, free program that will provide Massachusetts cultural heritage institutions a chance to test and improve their disaster plans: the COSTEP MA Virtual Tabletop Exercise (TTX). A tabletop exercise presents one (or many) hypothetical scenarios through moderated prompts that simulate the experience of responding to a disaster. The COSTEP MA TTX will host multiple institutions in a virtual setting to test their plans, respond to disaster scenarios in real time, and then discuss the decision-making process with each other through virtual conference technology. Most or all of an institution’s staff are encouraged to participate. COSTEP MA plans to offer multiple exercises in 2020, and participation will be limited for each exercise.

In order to participate, your institution must commit to the following requirements:

  • The purpose of a TTX is to test your disaster plan. Your institution must have an up-to-date disaster plan that has been reviewed by participating staff to bring to the exercise on September 22nd. In order to help institutions prepare for the exercise and update their plans, COSTEP MA will be publishing a short blog series over the summer on tips for updating your plan.
  • A TTX provides your staff with an opportunity to work together as a team to respond to a simulated disaster. Your institution should ensure that multiple staff members are available to participate together on September 22nd. The TTX planners strongly encourage participation by leadership, response team members, and facilities staff. Volunteers and board members, if they have a role in response, are also welcome to participate as institutional members.

In order to register for this event, please delegate one person from your institution to fill out the below registration form on behalf of your institution. Once your registration has been confirmed, COSTEP MA will send out more details that can be distributed to participating staff, as well as a link to our disaster plan blog series. In an effort to comply with social distancing guidelines, COSTEP MA will enable virtual break-out rooms for an institution’s staff to discuss the steps in the exercise together before reporting back to the group as a whole.