Disability Inclusion and Disaster Risk: Principles and guidance for implementing the Sendai Framework

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FEDOMA, Federation of Disability Organisations in Malawi,NAD, The Norwegian Association of the Disabled,NUDIPU, National Union of Disabled Persons of Uganda

Natural disasters are an inevitable reality for most people. While they seem to be increasing in occurrence, our knowledge in disaster management and prevention is also improving. As we harness this knowledge and plan responses, it is crucial that we do not overlook individuals’ and communities’ limitations in coping with disaster. For instance, a fire may not be as extreme of a hazard for someone who has access to all of their senses and can follow prevention methods through fire alarm systems, however, they become deadly for someone who cannot hear alarm systems and evacuate in time. Therefore, Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) must conceive and plan in a way that is inclusive of people with disabilities and other ability-levels.

The Norwegian Association of the Disabled, the Federation of Disability Organisations in Malawi, and the National Union of Disabled Persons of Uganda have joined forces to create guidelines for ability-inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction. The guide provides practical advice for mainstream disability-inclusion in DRR actors and duty bearers. Persons with disabilities are already experts in managing disaster risk in their everyday lives, hence, incorporating their needs into DRR should come naturally.

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