Emergency Planner Disability Trainings and Resources
Disability Training for Emergency Planners: Serving People with Disabilities
The Ohio Disability and Health Program has produced a one hour training for first responders and emergency planners on inclusive disaster planning for people with disabilities. This training has been approved for Continuing Education Credit (CEU and CPT) for EMS, fire, law enforcement, and nursing personnel through by the Ohio Pease Officer Training Academy (OPOTA) and OSU’s Center for EMS. A certificate of completion will be issued following training and post-test completion.
Please access the training through the “Online CEUs” tab of the OSU Center for EMS website: https://wexnermedical.osu.edu/healthcare-professionals/center-for-ems
The training provides emergency planners and first responders with information and best practices that will ensure the safety of people with disabilities during emergency events. This training covers the following learning objectives:
- To highlight portions of a Federal law called the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 that are relevant for emergency planners. The ADA states that reasonable accommodations must be provided when necessary for people with disabilities to receive the same level of services as the general population.
- To provide information and methods that will help to ensure effective and appropriate communication and notification in reaching people with disabilities during emergencies.
- To identify groups of people who may need special consideration with regard to transportation and evacuation and to identify best practices for addressing those needs. These will include transporting mobility aids, assistive technology devices, and medical equipment.
- To provide information and methods that will ensure independence for people with disabilities in emergency shelters and in the recovery process.
- To provide guidance on making the emergency planning process inclusive to individuals with disabilities as well as disability organizations.
Additional resources for emergency planners, many of which are referenced in the training, can be found below.
ODHP Resource for Creating Connections in the Disability Community
This is a list of state and local disability organizations compiled by ODHP that local Emergency Management Agencies can contact to seek guidance on creating an inclusive emergency plan. Use this list as a starting point and branch out to contact any other local disability organizations in your area.
National and Federal Resources for Inclusive Planning
This website, offered by the United States Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, provides information and technical assistant on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. It includes a full text version of the ADA. Title II: State and Local Government Activities and Title III: Public Accommodations are most applicable to emergency planners.
Department of Justice ADA Best Practices Toolkit for State and Local Governments (especially Chapter 7- Emergency Management)
This webinar series was provided by the Great Lakes ADA Center. The series covers a variety of topics regarding the inclusion of persons with disabilities into emergency management and preparedness.
Issued by the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division: This guide provides an overview of Federal civil rights laws that ensure equal opportunity for people with disabilities, including the ADA. Contact information for agencies and organizations that can provide more information about how these laws are also provided.
The American Red Cross is a national and international organization that exists to provide compassionate care to those in need. The Red Cross is organized into five key services: areas disaster relief, lifesaving blood, supporting America’s Military Families, health and safety services, and international services. The Disaster Relief page can be found here: American Red Cross Disaster Relief
FEMA is a Federal Agency whose mission is to support citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover and mitigate all hazards. The following FEMA resources offer specific guidance on inclusive emergency planning for individuals with functional needs.
The National Fire Protection association gives various resources and information on assisting people with disabilities during evacuation operations.
Issued by the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division: This document provides the ADA’s 2010 Revised Requirements regarding service animals.
State Resources for Inclusive Planning
Disability Rights Ohio provides legal advocacy and rights protection to a wide range of people with disabilities. This includes assisting individuals with problems such as abuse, neglect, discrimination, access to assistive technology, special education, housing, employment, community integration, and the use of service animals. Disability Rights Ohio is Ohio's federally mandated Protection and Advocacy System. This page provides resources to assist individuals in making emergency plans.
Proceedings of the Conference on Emergency Preparedness for People with Disabilities. Webcast archives are included.
This Tab of Ohio’s state EOP provides planning guidance for meeting federal regulations that impact access and functional needs in general population shelters throughout Ohio.
Evacuation transportation Planning Tips for People with Access and Functional Needs from the California Emergency Management Agency's Evacuation/Transportation of People with Access and Functional Needs Planning Project.
Communication Tools for Use in Shelters
Individuals with communication barriers and special healthcare or functional needs or their caregivers can fill out their personal information on the Passport in advance to help them prepare for emergencies. The Passport can then be reviewed by shelter and healthcare workers and serves as an excellent method for communicating emergency health information.
“I Speak” is a tool for law enforcement and other criminal justice agencies to identify the language of individuals they encounter who do not speak English. “I Speak” is provided as a partnership effort between the Bureau of Justice Assistance and the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services.
This Communication Tool is designed to assist shelter workers to communicate with people who have various types of communication barriers. It provides images that will help shelter workers determine the specific needs, medical concerns, allergies, and other important information, of individuals with whom they cannot communicate orally.
Interpretation Services Resources
Sign Language interpretation services are generally provided for a fee by private agencies or individuals, and can also be accessed via video phone. You may request a list of accredited interpretation agencies in your area from the Better Business Bureau or contact one of the agencies listed below.
Deaf Services Center is the largest provider of community-based services for people who are deaf or hard of hearing in the state of Ohio. Interpreters are available 24/7.
RID is a national membership organization for sign language interpreters. You can search their online member directory for local interpreters or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on locating a certified interpreter.
The Ohio Relay Service is a free public service for communication between standard (voice) users and persons who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, deaf-blind, and speech-disabled using text telephones (TTYs) or PCs via the Internet.
Planning Checklists for Deaf/Hard of Hearing Individuals
These videos have an audible voice over and text appearing alongside the interpreter. Also, the Emergency Preparedness Guide formatted in Braille, large print, and regular font
This checklist was put together by the American Association for the Deaf-Blind.
Transportation and Evacuation
Ambulettes are specially modified vehicles that can transport people who use wheelchairs. Information and rules regarding wheelchair accessible ambulettes can be found on the ODPS EMS website. Do a web search to find ambulette providers in your area, or check with the Better Businesses Bureau.
FEMA produced this orientation manual to ensure that first responders to learn how best to perform a rescue using equipment and procedures that facilitate safe evacuation for any person with a disability. The manual provides an overview of disability types, tips, and possible accommodations that may be needed. Carry techniques and evacuation devices that are appropriate for use with people who have physical disabilities or use wheel chairs are also provided.
The mission of Rob’s Rescue is: to enhance the effectiveness, safety, and sensitivity of the emergency response process for people with special emergency needs and individuals who are morbidly obese through specialized training, patient information, and equipment. Rob’s Rescue staff is available for technical assistance and also offer presentations that can count for CEU credit.
Yellow Cab is currently the only taxi service in Columbus that offers wheelchair accessible cabs. Check on-line to find accessible cab services in other parts of Ohio. Phone number: 614-444-4444
The Yale Rudd Center works to improve the world’s diet, prevent obesity, and reduce weight stigma. This worksheet from the Yale Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity is designed to help healthcare providers recognize societal and personal bias against overweight people.
Training for Shelter Workers
Disaster-Resistant Communities Group: Mobility Support Demonstration Videos
Just-In-Time Training (Videos) – Functional Needs Support Services (FNSS) Shelter Operations. These videos demonstrate the appropriate ways to assist people with various functional needs which they are in shelters. Includes demonstrations on moving individuals who have mobility impairments and assisting with medical needs.
June Isaacson Kailes – a listing of guidance on functional needs sheltering and other topics
This is a powerpoint from FEMA. The purpose of the powerpoint is to provide planning guidance to emergency managers and shelter planners in meeting access and functional needs in general population shelters.
This guidebook from the Red Cross is from a Shelter Worker online training about serving people with access and functional needs in shelters. It provides a comprehensive overview for Shelter Workers on how to best serve this population
This link gives information on how to include pets into the emergency planning process.
The ARTs assist local, regional, and state-level animal stakeholders, organizations, businesses, and individuals by improving animal emergency plans, and conducting animal activities, exercises, and responses. We have included the link to the following response teams in Ohio below.
June Isaacson Kailes – This is an emergency power planning checklist for people who use electricity and battery dependent assistive technology and medical devices.
Emergency Preparedness Tips and Checklists for people who use electricity and battery dependent assistive technology and medical devices.
This website provides multiple resources for disaster planning for dialysis and kidney transplant patients.