Resources for People with Disabilities in Emergencies & Disasters

Access to resources in disaster is especially important for people with disabilities, who are disproportionately impacted by emergencies and disasters. Here are some resources we recommend for people with disabilities, organizations, and emergency planning and response managers:

Resources from the World Institute on Disability:

The Rights of People with Disabilities in Disasters and Emergencies

Emergency Preparedness, Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Resilience page

Paralysis, Disability, and Disaster Readiness materials

External Resources

United Nations Economic and Social Commision for Asia and the Pacific: Disability Inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction- A Whole Community Action – A series of self-paced learning modules aims to build understanding about how to design and implement disaster risk reduction planning and preparedness strategies that are inclusive for all.

United Nations Department of Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR): Disaster Preparedness Guides for Persons with Disabilities

Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery: Disability Inclusion in Disaster Risk Management: Promising Practices and Opportunities for Enhanced Engagement

READY.Gov: READY.Gov websites

READY.Gov (English)

READY.Gov (Spanish)

READY.Gov – Individuals with Disabilities and Others with Access and Functional Needs

Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies: Manifesto for Disability Inclusive Emergency Management Before, During and After Disasters

Additional resources from the Partnerships for Inclusive Disaster Strategies:

Partnership for Inclusive Disaster Strategies Disaster Hotline

Getting It Wrong: An Indictment with a Blueprint for Getting It Right- Disability Rights, Obligations and Responsibilities Before, During and After Disasters, co-authored by WID Executive Director/CEO Marcie Roth

National Fire Protection Association: Emergency Evacuation Planning Guide for People with Disabilities

The Board Resource Center: Feeling Safe, Being Safe: Guided by the Consumer Advisory Committee of the California Department of the Developmental Services, Feeling Safe, Being Safe materials provide practical learning required to put together personal emergency preparedness plans to share with family, neighbors and community support agencies.

June Isaacson Kailes, Disability Policy Consultant: Emergency Registries are pointed to as an easy and logical answer for addressing what are perceived as “special needs” for a small segment of the population. In reality, registry issues are complex, and the needs of people when functionally defined, are not special, and are not limited to just a small group of people.

Additional resources from June Isaacson Kailes:

Be Real, Specific, and Current: Emergency Preparedness Information for People with Disabilities and Others with Access and Functional Needs

Guidance for Integrating People with Disabilities in Emergency Drills, Table Tops and Exercises

Checklist for Inclusive Emergency Management: This checklist is for emergency planners, managers, responders, and public information officers (PIOs) who have responsibility for developing, maintaining, testing, delivering and revising emergency plans and services.

Disaster Resources for People with Disabilities and Others with Access and Functional Needs

Emergency Travel Safety Tips for Overnight Stays Tips for everyone, including specific tips for people with disabilities

Be Ready to Go: Evacuation Transportation Planning Tips for People with Access and Functional Needs

Be Ready To Go: Disability-Specific Supplies For Emergency Kits

Emergency Power Planning for People Who Use Electricity and Battery Dependent Assistive Technology and Medical Devices Emergency power planning checklist is for people who use electricity and battery dependent assistive technology and medical devices.

Emergency Preparedness for Personal Assistant Services (PAS) Users, Edition 2.0, specific tips for individuals who use personal assistants, attendants or caregivers.

Tips for Emergency Use of Mobile Devices

U.S. Department of Labor: Practical guidelines to help emergency managers and employees plan for workplace emergencies.

The Pass it On Center: Pass it on Center Disaster Response: The Pass It on Center works with Assistive Technology Act Programs and their nonprofit affiliates in other states and territories to provide safe, appropriate interim devices until a new, permanent device becomes available.

REAADI for Disaster Act: REAADI for Disasters Act page

Portlight Inclusive Disaster Strategies: Portlight Inclusive Disaster Strategies website

FEMA: FEMA Resources for People with Disabilities, Access and Functional Needs

More resources from FEMA:

“We Prepare Every Day” Public Service Announcement with open captions, CDI and audio description

Trach Mommas: Trach Mommas of Louisiana provides disability supplies to disaster-impacted people with disabilities

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): Children and Youth with Special Healthcare Needs in Emergencies

Federal Communications Commission (FCC): Guidelines requiring televised emergency information to be accessible

Mutual Aid Network: Mutual Aid Network Library

More resources from the Mutual Aid Network:

Tips for Collective Care & Mutual Aid (including Disability Justice Focus)

American Association of Retired People (AARP): Community Connections – Find Mutual Aid Groups Near You


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