Local Resilience Forums (LRFs) are multi-agency partnerships made up of representatives from local public services, including the emergency services, local authorities, the NHS, the Environment Agency and others. These agencies are known as Category 1 Responders, as defined by the Civil Contingencies Act.
LRFs are supported by organisations, known as Category 2 responders, such as Highways England and public utility companies. They have a responsibility to co-operate with Category 1 organisations and to share relevant information with the LRF. The geographical area the forums cover is based on police areas.
LRFs also work with other partners in the military and voluntary sectors who provide a valuable contribution to LRF work in emergency preparedness.
The LRFs aim to plan and prepare for localised incidents and catastrophic emergencies. They work to identify potential risks and produce emergency plans to either prevent or mitigate the impact of any incident on their local communities.
A Local Resilience Forum (LRF) is not a legal entity, nor does a Forum have powers to direct its members. Nevertheless, the Civil Contingencies Act state that responders, through the Forum, have a collective responsibility to plan, prepare and communicate in a multi-agency environment.
The purpose of the LRF process is to ensure effective delivery of those duties under the Act that need to be developed in a multi-agency environment and individually as a Category 1 responder.
In particular the LRF process should deliver:
- the compilation of agreed risk profiles for the area, through a Community Risk Register;
- a systematic, planned and coordinated approach to encourage Category 1 responders, according to their functions, to address all aspects of policy in relation to:
- planning for emergencies;
- planning for business continuity management;
- publishing information about risk assessments and plans;
- arrangements to warn and inform the public; and
- other aspects of civil protection duty, including the promotion of business continuity management by local authorities; and
- support for the preparation by all or some of its members of multi-agency plans and other documents, including protocols and agreements and the coordination of multi-agency exercises and other training events.