Department of Christmas Affairs Strategic Operations Update

The Department of Christmas Affairs is currently reviewing how any COVID-19 restrictions and implications may impact the operations of the Department in 2020.

To consider all necessary COVID impacts, the DCA established a Departmental And Section Heads Executive Review (DASHER). The DASHER undertook careful consideration of each area of the Department which needed to be consulted when formulating this year’s Christmas activities. Early discussions were focussed on identifying those who within the Department should be responsible and accountable, and those who needed to be consulted or kept informed. The DASHER has now had 10 meetings and all Section Heads have asked to be kept consulted and informed. The DASHER is still working to assign formal responsibilities and accountability.

Resulting from the DASHER, a key recommendation was to create a Deployment of Arial Navigation COVID Emergency Response (DANCER) Steering Committee comprised of Departmental Executives, to be on standby in the week leading into Christmas. The DANCER Steering Committee will work closely with the Department’s Navigation and Geographical Services Section to ensure the travel route and flight path remain clear and any COVID restrictions are incorporated. The DANCER Steering Committee has been negotiating with zoos and national parks to create the Backup Levitating Intelligent Tanzanian Zebra Emergency Network (BLITZEN) in case any of the reindeer are ill on Christmas Eve.

The DANCER Committee has introduced a new framework for the Animal Welfare Section to ensure the health and wellbeing of Santa’s Reindeer in the month leading into Christmas and following all Christmas travel. The new framework is supported by a Protocol Reminder – Antibacterial, Neurotoxic Cleansing, Endocrinology and Radiology (PRANCER, the Protocol), an outline of all key health measures for which the animals will be assessed post gift delivery. The Animal and Welfare Section have found the Protocol incredibly useful, predominantly being used for lining reindeer stalls.

The Department’s Chief Technology Group has implemented A Virus Imaging and X-Ray Electromagnetic Notification (VIXEN) system, which will assess all materials being brought into Santa’s Workshop to be used for gift production. Any material which does not receive a positive evaluation from VIXEN will be quarantined and safely destroyed. The Chief Technology Group has also implemented a new support request process for when VIXEN alerts are not received, where VIXEN users will receive 11 notifications that their request has been received before finally being advised to restart VIXEN and try again.

The Department’s Finances team is reviewing all Commercial, Operational Management and Economic Transactions (COMET), ensuring Santa’s Workshop remains financially viable throughout these difficult times. All areas of the Department hope to retain their budget for the 2021-22 financial year and so the Finance team are being very well looked after with regular coffees, cakes and cups of eggnog being brought into this area of the building.

A Communique - Understanding Pandemic Information Directive (CUPID) has recently been released by the Department’s Marketing Team, which will provide all Elves with advice on how to create toys that adhere to all pandemic standards. The Communique includes barely any new or useful information but the look and feel of the document is of a very high standard.

The Delegate Officer of Naughty and Nice Evaluation Reviews (DONNER) have confirmed a significant increase of names being added to the Nice List, following the amount of children washing their hands, following 1.5 metre distancing rules and sneezing into their elbows, which is helping slow the spread of the virus.

The Department continues to progress with all operational activities and is on track for present production to be finalised on Christmas Eve.

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