Disability and Disasters
Date: Wednesday 12 March 6.00pm-8.30pm.
Panel discussion: 6.00pm to 7.30pm, Room 106, Roberts Building, University College London, Gower Street.
Reception: 7.30pm to 8.30pm, Foyer, Roberts Building
In very many cases, the needs of people with disabilities are neglected in arrangements for managing emergencies and reducing the impacts of disaster. People with disabilities constitute about 15 per cent of the world population, and one in four families includes such a person. We are striving to move towards a fairer, more inclusive society and that must be one in which people with disabilities benefit from as much safety and resilience as the rest of society. Disasters should not be situations in which discrimination is tolerated, or in which the principles of 'design for all' are abandoned.
To achieve good disaster risk reduction and emergency response it is essential to improve the understanding of the needs of people with disabilities and ensure that provision is made to ensure that they do not suffer discrimination and disadvantage relative to the rest of the population. For many civil protection and emergency response organisations, this requires fundamental changes in the way that services are configured and delivered.
We have convened a panel of experts in this field, who will debate the issues associated with improving emergency preparedness for people with disabilities. The points of view of civil protection, government and civil society organisations will be taken into account, and strategies for improving service delivery will be discussed.
Prof. David Alexander, Institute for Risk and Disaster Reduction, UCL
- Mr Silvio Sagramola, Director of the Info-Handicap Association, Luxembourg, and co-author of the Council of Europe Report and Guidelines on Including People with Disabilities in Disaster Preparedness and Response
- Dr Mechthilde Fuhrer, European and Mediterranean Major Hazards Agreement (EUR-OPA), Democratic Governance Directorate, Council of Europe, Strasbourg
- Dr Maria Kett, Assistant Director of the Leonard Cheshire Disability and Inclusive Development Centre, UCL
- Dr Ilan Kelman, is Reader in Risk, Resilience and Global Health, UCL and is co-editor of a new book entitled "Disability and Disaster."
When & Where
UCL Institute for Risk and Disaster Reduction
Reducing the impact of disasters globally presents a colossal challenge that requires coordinated and collaborative action. The UCL Institute for Risk and Disaster Reduction (IRDR) brings together the wealth of knowledge and expertise across the university, and through research, teaching, public engagement and knowledge exchange aims to improve the understanding of risk and overcome the barriers to increasing resilience to disasters.