Emergencies, Disasters, and Climate Resilience

The frequency, intensity, and magnitude of disasters and public health emergencies are rapidly increasing due to both climate and non-climate driven causes, resulting in a disproportionate impact on people with disabilities worldwide.

According to the United Nations, people with disabilities are two to four times more likely to be injured or die in a disaster. This is due to failures in government and community planning, inclusion and meeting accessibility and accommodation obligations. True resilience is only achievable with a full commitment to equal access, universal design and whole community inclusion. WID is launching a global campaign to optimize disability inclusive emergency preparedness, disaster risk reduction and climate resilience, with a specific focus on actions that have a measurable impact on improving readiness and resilience for communities and improved outcomes for disaster impacted people with disabilities.

WID COVID-19 Response

WID joins disability rights and emergency management experts from across the country in issuing an urgent call to action for immediate strategies and solutions from the federal government and governments at every level, including local, state, tribal and territorial, to address the specific needs of persons with disabilities throughout the COVID-19 outbreak and all public health emergencies.

WID is working in collaboration with the Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies, the National Council on Independent Living Emergency Preparedness Subcommittee, and other local, national, and international groups to get people with disabilities the information, care, and supports to survive this pandemic.

Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration

World Institute on Disability (WID), the Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies (the Partnership), and ONG Inclusiva have joined forces to form the Global Alliance for Disability Resource Acceleration (Global Alliance or GADRA) as a “Call-to-Action” to galvanize disability-led organizations, foundations, corporations, and other allies to identify needs and link partners to accelerate assistance and resources, both during and after disasters.

On July 9, 2020 we came together with our partners and disabled leaders from 39 countries to introduce the Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration, including our Steering Committee and Founder’s Circle.

Plan to join us for our first Twitter Chat on Thursday, August 13, where where LaVant Consulting, Inc., led by disability justice advocate and Global Alliance Founders Circle member, Andraéa LaVant will be leading us in discussion about the Global Alliance, the disaster experiences of people with disabilities, and how we can build a disaster response alliance that works for all of us.

Learn more about GADRA, including how to join us, by selecting the linked image:

Banner with text: Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration. Global Alliance logo - 6 arrows wrapping up and around an abstract globe shape, each arrow a different color - red, orange, purple, blue, green, and gray. Background: large matching arrows stretch from the bottom left to the top right of the frame over a pale blue background.

Global Disability + Disaster Town Hall Meetings

Leading up to the launch of the Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration, we hosted two Global Disability and Disaster Town Hall Meetings via Zoom, bringing together hundreds of disabled leaders to discuss the experiences of people with disabilities and disability-led organizations in the coronavirus pandemic.

We will continue to host these Global Disability and Disaster Town Hall meetings, with our third one scheduled for August 27, 2020 begininning at 12 noon ET/4 PM UTC – more info coming soon!

To learn more about the Global Disability and Disaster Town Hall meetings, including video recordings,  transcripts, and polling results from previous sessions, visit the Global Disability and Disaster Town Hall page via the linked image below:

Text: Global Disability + Disaster Town Hall Meetings. Collage of ears, speech bubbles, hands signing, and a hand using a communication board.

Click on the linked image below to visit our COVID-19 page, which includes more information about WID’s response, calls to action, COVID-related disability rights, resources, upcoming events, and press mentions.

Banner text: COVID-19. Icon of N-95 mask with tiny WID globe on the filter, and two oversized coronavirus molecules. Background photo of an enlarged illustration of COVID molecules with magenta tint.


Emergencies, Disasters, and Climate Resilience pages

Click on the linked images below or the following links to visit pages in the Emergencies, Disasters, and Climate Resilience section: Emergency Preparedness + Disaster Risk Reduction, The Rights of People with Disabilities in Disasters & Public Health Emergencies, and Resources for People with Disabilities in Emergencies & Disasters.

Banner with text: Global Alliance for Disaster Resource Acceleration. Global Alliance logo - 6 arrows wrapping up and around an abstract globe shape, each arrow a different color - red, orange, purple, blue, green, and gray. Background: large matching arrows stretch from the bottom left to the top right of the frame over a pale blue background.Banner with text: Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Risk Reduction. Icons of checklist with WID globe, warning sign, and a green downward arrow representing reduced risk. Background photo of a tornado funnel cloud with emerald green tint.Banner with text: The Rights of People with Disabilities in Disasters and Public Health Emergencies. Icon of brass scales with warning sign and small WID glob at the base of the scales. Photo of 3 medical professionals wearing full HAZMAT suits, masks, and goggles.Banner with text: Resources for People with Disabilities in Emergencies and Disasters. Icon of cardboard box with WID globe on the side. Photo background of hands passing a bag of supplies with emerald green tint.


For more information, contact Thomas Foley, WID’s Managing Director, at tom@wid.org.

If you are having technical issues or accessibility issues on this site, email wid@wid.org.

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