Disaster Preparedness for People with Disabilities

It seems like every few weeks we get news of yet another horrible disaster happening somewhere:  earthquakes, hurricanes, oil spills, tornadoes, tsunamis, nuclear meltdowns, wild fires, floods . . .  It’s truly overwhelming, and if you’re anything like me, you tend to live in a state of denial that it could ever happen to you.  It took the recent triple-whammy in Japan to finally motivate me to actually do something about disaster preparedness myself.  In case it had the same effect on you, I thought I’d share the resources I found.

Preparing for a disaster is a daunting task for anyone, but it’s even more so for people with disabilities because there are more things that need to be considered and planned for.  Fortunately, there is some excellent information available specifically for people with disabilities.

The resource library at the Redcross is superb; not only do they have information for specific disabilities (visual, hearing, mobility, mental, etc.) but they also provide information in a variety of languages.  Two other noteworthy sources of information are Ready.gov and  FEMA.  Each of the three sites has something to offer that the others don’t, so check out all of them .  And these sites are just the jumping off place–be sure to explore the links that they provide as well.

The most important thing is to begin; take the first step.  Then you can chip away at it a little at a time as your time and energy and finances allow.  The more you do, the more confident you will become about protecting yourself and those you love.

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