Since September, Australia has been battling a catastrophic fire season that has led to the destruction of thousands of homes and nearly a billion animals. As a global company with a strong footprint in Australia — including eight offices and hundreds of employees — SAI Global has been watching the situation with great concern.
When conditions began to rapidly deteriorate right after the new year and authorities declared a state of emergency in Victoria and New South Wales (NSW) where we have corporate offices, SAI Global mobilized quickly to implement our crisis response plan to support our Australian-based employees and ensure their safety.
As a world-class Risk Management enterprise software company with a dedicated Environmental, Health & Safety (EHS) solution, we live and breathe the tenets of a proactive and safety-first culture. Our emergency response plan has included a safety check notification for Australian employees, reminders of resources available with our Employee Assistance Program (EAP), along with internal communications to update our global employee community about the situation. Thankfully, all of our team members in Australia are safe and accounted for, and rain has abated the dire situation such that the country can think about recovery. We continue to monitor the situation.
With Australia only just entering its summer season, it will be several months before fire danger has entirely subsided. For now, we continue to champion our EHS values internally and do everything we can to assist our employees. In addition, SAI Global has made a charitable contribution to the Rural Aid Australia organization, and we’re hosting local fundraising events with our Australia offices to continue to support recovery efforts throughout the summer.
As EHS, business continuity and risk management professionals, at SAI Global we’re no strangers to the effects that weather can have on a business. When it comes to coping with the real impact of climate change on businesses around the world, we are on the front line. The business community is becoming increasingly aware that extreme weather events can have a dramatic impact on a company’s long-term plans.
The fires in Australia are a catastrophic emergency that has hit quite close to home for our company, employees, clients and partners. Many of our SAI Global employees in Australia have been impacted by these devastating fires. Our thoughts and support will continue for our friends and colleagues in Australia as you seek to rebuild and recover.
Likewise, we stand ready to help our clients and partners identify pertinent climate risks and put in place appropriate plans to help your organizations manage the challenges ahead. We all strive to not only ride out the storms of climate change, but to rise above them.