[fcb-l] FW: [leadership] Fw: White House Celebrates Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities
pedwards at mdc.edu
Mon Mar 14 12:07:28 GMT 2011
From: leadership-bounces at acb.org [mailto:leadership-bounces at acb.org] On Behalf Of jeff thom
Sent: Thursday, February 10, 2011 12:48 PM
To: leadership at acb.org; CCB-Presidents at ccbnet.org; CCB-L at ccbnet.org
Subject: [leadership] Fw: White House Celebrates Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities
----- Original Message -----
From: White House Disability Group<mailto:disability at messages.whitehouse.gov>
To: jsthom at comcast.net<mailto:jsthom at comcast.net>
Sent: Friday, March 11, 2011 3:38 PM
Subject: White House Celebrates Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities
Below please find a blog from Heidi Avery, Deputy Assistant to the President for Homeland Security on the National Security Staff and a press release from FEMA regarding this outstanding event and announcement.
Once again, the President and his administration demonstrate a strong commitment to people with disabilities.
The White House Celebrates Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities
Posted by Heidi Avery on March 11, 2011 at 06:20 PM EST
Many of you may remember us marking the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act<http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2010/07/27/celebrating-with-substance> this past July in a wonderful and moving event at the White House. On that day, we reflected on how far this historic law brought us in living up to our civil rights promises for all Americans – and how far we still have to go to make sure that every person in this country – regardless of their race, background, income and whether or not they have a disability – has equal access to all of the opportunities our great nation has to offer.
As the President put it better than anyone: “To move America forward. That’s what we did with the ADA. That is what we do today. And that’s what we’re going to do tomorrow -- together.” And today marked another historic day in this effort as FEMA and the National Disability Rights Network came together, along with other leaders and advocates from across the disability community, to sign a memorandum of agreement – an agreement that solidifies a partnership in working together to make sure we are planning for and meeting the needs of people with disabilities before, during, and after disasters strike.
It sounds like common sense, but the unfortunate truth is that for years the needs of people with disabilities were more of an afterthought during disasters. Not enough was done to make sure that shelters planned for the access and functional needs of individuals who might require wheelchairs to be replaced or beds at a certain height if it was necessary to evacuate during a disaster. Residents who were blind or deaf, and those with intellectual disabilities didn’t have access to critical information about evacuation routes or other warnings. And in some cases, accessible transportation for people with disabilities just wasn’t factored into planning at all. This was largely due to a simple lack of coordination and upfront planning for the whole of community.
Under the leadership of President Obama and Administrator Fugate, we are changing all of this. We have taken several concrete steps already. And as Administrator Fugate said at today’s MOA signing – we must plan for the whole of community up front, with FEMA as just one part of the emergency management team. Today’s agreement helps strengthen the relationship that Administrator Fugate and his team have already developed with the National Disability Rights Network and other key stakeholders. It will help FEMA do two critical things:
* First, it helps us plan for the needs of the entire community, for any disaster. That means planning for the needs of people with disabilities, young children, seniors, and all members of the “real” community.
* Second, it’s another step toward bringing the collective resources of the entire community to the table to help meet those needs.
President Obama put it best during his remarks seven months ago. Equal access and equal opportunities are common principles, no matter who you are. And they need to apply to every aspect of our lives, whether at school, at work, in our homes, or when an emergency happens. Today was another important step forward in that journey. And tomorrow, we begin again.
Heidi Avery is Deputy Assistant to the President for Homeland Security on the National Security Staff.
FEMA AND NATIONAL DISABILITY RIGHTS NETWORK SIGN AGREEMENT TO STRENGTHEN EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT COLLABORATION
WASHINGTON-Today the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) signed a memorandum of agreement that further strengthens their growing partnership to ensure that the access and functional needs of people with disabilities are incorporated into all aspects of planning for, responding to and recovering from disasters. Today's signing was hosted by the White House, and was attended by advocates from the disability and emergency management community, including disaster survivors, as well as national security and disability advisors for President Obama.
"FEMA is just one part of the emergency management team," said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. "The President and I are fully committed to addressing the needs of people with disabilities, in part by ensuring that Americans with disabilities - critical members of our team - have a seat at the table to make sure we are serving and protecting all of the members of our communities equally, before, during and after a disaster."
While FEMA has coordinated with the NDRN in the past, this agreement will strengthen their relationship to ensure the needs of people with disabilities, young children, seniors, and all members of the community are fully integrated into emergency planning efforts. Specifically, the agreement will ensure that advocates for the NDRN's 57 state and territory affiliates have access to FEMA disaster response offices, including workspace and logistical support, before, during and after a disaster, to be involved in policy decisions and coordinate directly with the entire emergency management team. This partnership will help FEMA leverage the resources of the entire community, including the resources the NDRN or other organizations can offer, to better meet the needs of the entire population impacted by a disaster.
"NDRN and our Disability Rights affiliates are a valuable source of knowledge to disaster officials at all levels, and will help ensure that individuals with disabilities can survive and recover from a disaster," said NDRN Executive Director Curt Decker.
Improving how FEMA plans for and incorporates the needs of people with disabilities into all aspects of disaster operations has been a top priority for the Obama administration and Administrator Fugate. In the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina then-Senator Barack Obama introduced legislation that directed the Secretary of Homeland Security to ensure that each state provided comprehensive information regarding plans for evacuating individuals with disabilities and a variety of access and functional needs, and to plan for providing food, water, and shelter for evacuees with disabilities or access and functional needs.
Early last year, Administrator Fugate established the first-ever office within FEMA focused on this goal, the Office of Disability Integration and Coordination. In July 2010, FEMA signed a memorandum of agreement with the National Council on Independent Living which allows the 450 centers for independent living from across the country to access FEMA disaster recovery centers in order to better assist people with disabilities impacted by a disaster. In September 2010, FEMA hosted its first-ever "Getting Real" conference, which brought together stakeholders from the disability and emergency management communities to discuss how we can better partner together and integrate the needs of people with disabilities into our emergency planning. And in November 2010, FEMA announced new guidelines, the Functional Needs Support Services Guidance, on general population emergency sheltering for people with access and functional needs.
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.
The White House · 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW · Washington DC 20500 · 202-456-1111
__________ Information from ESET NOD32 Antivirus, version of virus signature database 3312 (20080731) __________
The message was checked by ESET NOD32 Antivirus.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
-------------- next part --------------
An embedded and charset-unspecified text was scrubbed...
More information about the fcb-l