Saturday, October 23, 2021

Play

Some states entice people back to the workplace by increasing safety standards and higher minimum wage; Bannon held in Contempt of Congress; and the latest cyber security concerns.

Play

House votes to hold Bannon in contempt of Congress; Trump announces new social media platform TRUTH Social; and the Biden administration says it will continue to expel migrants under Title 42.

Play

An all-Black Oklahoma town joins big cities in seeking reparations; a Kentucky vaccination skeptic does a 180; telehealth proves invaluable during pandemic; and spooky destinations lure tourists at Halloween.

“Access Issues” at Some Hurricane Irene Evacuation Shelters

Play

Monday, August 29, 2011   

NEW YORK - Emergency evacuation decisions are tougher for people with disabilities because they need to be sure they are fleeing to shelters that they can get in and out of and use. In the wake of Hurricane Irene, there are allegations today that the City Office of Emergency Management (OEM) fell short on promises that people being ordered out of "Zone A" would be evacuated to "accessible shelters."

Susan Dooah, executive director of the Center for the Independence of the Disabled New York (CIDNY), says she surveyed six shelters for people from "Zone A." Dooah says that, despite promises from the city, she found numerous accessibility issues both inside and outside the evacuation shelters.

"Whether people using wheelchairs or scooters would be able to get in, in the event of an emergency, and once they're there, will they have to sit up all night in a wheelchair, will they be able to go into the bathrooms?"

An OEM representative said: "Evacuees with disabilities have been fully accommodated and placed at sites with accessibility" and could not comment further without knowing more details. Dooha says OEM already has that information, because, she says, she sent them a detailed list of problems as the hurricane approached on Saturday.

Dooha says the city-wide transit shutdown at noon Saturday closed the window on evacuation for some New Yorkers with disabilities.

"The transportation that was running after that time was inaccessible; the school buses they were using, the taxis, the vans, did not have lifts and would not be able to help people evacuate."

Dooah says her group (CIDNY) has been working with OEM on emergency shelter access issues since the attacks of 9/11, and she is frustrated with their performance during Hurricane Irene.

"There's a lot to do to get from the intention that these issues be addressed to the reality that they are; and right between that intention and that reality is room for a lot of very real harm to people who are in crisis and are left without somewhere to turn."

Dooah credited shelter volunteers for doing the very best they could under difficult circumstances, but she also noted that they did not appear to have been briefed on disabilities issues.


get more stories like this via email

California has collected more than 600 tons of unwanted prescription drugs since the Take-Back Day program began in 2010. (Dodgerton Skillhause/Morguefile)

Health and Wellness

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Saturday is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, when the Drug Enforcement Administration encourages everyone to clean out …


Health and Wellness

BALTIMORE - This month marks the four-year anniversary of the #MeToo movement, and an art project aims to help incarcerated survivors heal by telling …

Social Issues

OGDEN, Utah - Utah is one of only a handful of states that taxes food, but one state legislator says taxing groceries should become a thing of the …


In a new poll, 71% of all registered voters support strengthening rules to reduce oil and gas methane pollution, including 73% of Independents and 50% of Republicans. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

CASPER, Wyo. - A strong majority of voters across party lines say they want national rules similar to those passed in Wyoming to reduce methane …

Health and Wellness

ARLINGTON, Va. - Although COVID-19 rates have gone down, the virus continues to hit the Hispanic community especially hard. Now, a new campaign aims …

Child-care advocates say if North Dakota doesn't boost funding for the system, more families might pull out of the workforce because of access issues. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

BISMARCK, N.D. - A portion of American Rescue Plan funding sent to North Dakota has yet to be divvied up. Groups that want to improve the child-care …

Social Issues

PITTSBURGH - As businesses across the country deal with a massive labor shortage, Pennsylvania aims to entice people back to the workplace by …

Environment

ALBANY, N.Y. - Environmental groups want Gov. Kathy Hochul to sign a bill that mandates monitoring the state's drinking water for "emerging …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021