Saturday, July 29, 2017

July 2017. HumanitarianID. “Talking to Humanitarian Responders”

 

Sometimes the most basic things are the hardest to do, especially in emergencies. Have you ever had to manage a humanitarian contact list in a disaster setting or a protracted crisis?

We asked humanitarian responders at the UNDAC Induction Course in Switzerland how they manage their own contact lists. Find out what they had to say:

 


If you would like to contribute to our series “Talking to Humanitarian Responders”, get your phone cameras ready and send us a clip on how you and your colleagues manage humanitarian contact lists. We’ll do a professional editing of your video, publish it on our YouTube Channel and share it through Twitter. Here are a couple of questions we had in mind: 
  • Introduce yourself in 2-3 sentences: your name, organization, your job and the country where you work
  • Tell us about your work in the humanitarian field. What challenges do you face?
  • Describe how do you manage contact lists and how Humanitarian ID could help

Now, just a couple of technical guidelines to help us in the editing process. Don't worry, it's not complicated:
  • If you film using a smartphone, make sure you film landscape (horizontally)
  • Film the person from the shoulder upward (like in the videos we’ve already shared)
  • Try and use natural light so we can see you better
  • Make sure we can hear you; try to be as close as possible to your phone or camera. Avoid areas that have a lot of background noise
  • Try and keep your clip under 8 minutes (and don’t worry if you stumble - we’ll edit it for you)

Once you’ve recorded your clip, get in touch with us at info@humanitarian.id

And … action!

Your Humanitarian ID Team 

2017. FEMA Should Disallow $2.04 Billion Approved for New Orleans Infrastructure Repairs

The latest DHS OIG report is available on our website.


FEMA Should Disallow $2.04 Billion Approved for New Orleans Infrastructure Repairs

FEMA should not have awarded the City and S&W Board the initial $785 million, or the additional $1.25 billion to complete the repairs to damaged infrastructure, because the damages were not eligible for Federal disaster assistance funding. Even though FEMA attributed the damages to the water distribution system directly to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, we concluded that FEMA did not have sufficient documentation to support its decision. In fact, evidence shows that the infrastructure was old and in poor condition even before the hurricanes.
Eligibility for FEMA funding requires that damages be the direct result of the declared disaster, and it is the applicant’s responsibility to show that the damages are disaster-related. Read Report No. OIG 17-97-D


Office of Public Affairs
E: dhs-oig.officepublicaffairs@oig.dhs.gov
                       
OFFICE OF INSPECTOR GENERAL l DHS
WWW.OIG.DHS.GOV  l TWITTER: @DHSOIG

August 2017. CAWST Sustainable Sanitation Alliance. Survey.

Défilez vers le bas pour le texte en français
Desplácese hacia abajo para ver el texto en español
 
Dear Charles,

CAWST and the Sustainable Sanitation Alliance invite you to be a change-maker in the sanitation sector. Five minutes of your time and expertise will help us improve the sanitation sector's ability to deliver on the goal of "water and sanitation for all."

We want to know more about your needs for access to information, and your ideas about how to improve collaboration and information exchange.

Scroll down for details on taking the Survey Offline 
Please complete the survey by Friday, 11th August 2017.

If you have questions or need assistance, email us at: SanitationSurvey@cawst.org
This survey is part of a larger SuSanA project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
To take the survey Offline:
  • Click here to download the survey to your browser in English
  • Click Start Your Survey to begin.
  • Each time you click Next, the survey saves automatically so you can return later to finish
  • Click Upload Completed Survey when you have internet access.
____________________________________________________________________________
Devenez un acteur du changement dans le domaine de l'assainissement avec CAWST et l'Alliance pour l'Assainissement Durable ! Nous vous invitons à allouer cinq minutes de votre temps et votre expertise pour aider le secteur de l'assainissement à atteindre l'objectif de "l'eau et l'assainissement pour tous".
Nous souhaiterions connaître plus précisément vos besoins en termes d'accès à l'information, et vos idées pour améliorer la collaboration et l'échange d'informations.
Vous pouvez changer la langue du l'enquête en cliquant sur l'option en haut de page

Faites défiler vers le bas pour répondre à l'enquête hors ligne 
Veuillez répondre à l'enquête avant le vendredi 11 août 2017.
Adressez-nous vos questions et vos demandes d'aide par courriel à l'adresse : SanitationSurvey@cawst.org.
Cette enquête fait partie d'un projet plus vaste mené par SuSanA et financé par la Fondation Bill and Melinda Gates.
Pour répondre à l'enquête hors ligne :
  • Cliquez ici pour télécharger l'enquête en français dans votre navigateur.
  • Cliquez sur Démarrer l'enquête pour commencer.
  • Chaque fois que vous cliquez sur le bouton Suivant, l'enquête est enregistrée automatiquement ; vous pouvez ainsi la reprendre ultérieurement.
  • Cliquez sur Charger l'enquête terminée quand vous aurez accès à internet.
____________________________________________________________________________
CAWST y la Alianza de Saneamiento Sostenible lo le invita a ser un agente de cambio en el sector del saneamiento. Cinco minutos de su tiempo y experiencia nos ayudarán a mejorar la capacidad del sector de saneamiento para cumplir la meta de "agua y saneamiento para todos".
Queremos saber más sobre sus necesidades de acceso a la información y sus ideas sobre cómo mejorar la colaboración y el intercambio de información.
Puede cambiar el idioma de la encuesta utilizando la barra en la parte superior de la página.

Desplácese hacia abajo para obtener detalles sobre cómo completar la encuesta sin conexión 
Por favor complete la encuesta antes del 11 de agosto de 2017.
Si tiene preguntas o necesita ayuda, envíe un correo electrónico a: SanitationSurvey@cawst.org
Esta encuesta es parte de un proyecto más grande de SuSanA financiado por la Fundación Bill y Melinda Gates
Para completar la encuesta sin conexión:
  • Haga clic aquí para descargar la encuesta a su navegador en español 
  • Haga clic en Inicie su encuesta para comenzar
  • Cada vez que haga clic en Siguiente, la encuesta se guarda automáticamente para que pueda volver más tarde para terminar
  • Haga clic en Subir encuesta completada cuando tenga acceso a internet
____________________________________________________________________________

Friday, July 28, 2017

2017. Public Health Humanitarian Responses to Natural Disasters

A new book “Public Health Humanitarian Responses to Natural Disasters” with Routledge as complimentary to the online course “Public Health Principles in Disaster and Medical Humanitarian Response”, which is available for purchase at the publisher’s website here: https://www.routledge.com/Public-Health-Humanitarian-Responses-to-Natural-Disasters/Chan/p/book/9781138953703

This book will be a very useful reference book for studying the course now and refreshing your study in the future.

A free preview of the book can be accessed here until the end of August 2017 and do share it with colleagues who may be interested.

Best wishes,
CCOUC


Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Show your support to address disasters, crisis, and emergency events in our communities.

/ˈbēmə/      Noun    the altar part or sanctuary in ancient and Orthodox churches.    JUDAISM   the podium or platform in a synagogue from which the Torah and Prophets are read.   noun: bimah; plural noun: bimahs; noun: bima   Historical    the platform from which orators spoke in ancient Athens.



BEMA International members:

Promote our professional, and community engagement in planning for, preparedness, response, recovery, mitigation, and resiliency building in your community, and our global communities. To show that support our Lifetime member, Mr. Wesley Chenoweth (U.S., Liberia) President, Grizzly Grafix Online (grizzlygrafixonline@gmail.com) has designed and created our first BEMA International T-shirt for members, friends, affiliates, private and public organizations as part of our association fundraising efforts to show support not only to your association, but to our communities in addressing disasters\crisis\emergencies that effect our communities.  


Purchase your T-shirt to help us continue our efforts of building homeland security & emergency management professionals, promoting community engagement, and capacity & resilience building globally.

CDS CEO BEMA International


Black Emergency Managers Association
           International
1231  Good Hope Road  S.E.
Washington, D.C.  20020
Office:   202-618-9097 
bEMA International 



July 2017. Is a More Equitable, Fairer Farm Bill Possible?


While Capitol Hill begins another round of Farm Bill negotiations, grassroots leaders gathered to discuss the people, places, and issues that have too often been shut out of funding.

By Leah Douglas | Farm Bill, FARMING, Food and Farm Labor

05.15.17

The clock is already ticking on the 2018 Farm Bill. Hearings on crop insurance, farm credit, nutrition programs, dairy policy, and other titles are being regularly held before the House Agriculture Committee. The witnesses in those hearings include members of trade associations, credit agencies, and energy companies—the stakeholders whose priorities are typically most represented in Farm Bill debates and in the final bill itself.

But this spring, across town from Capitol Hill, American University hosted a 2018 Farm Bill summit, co-sponsored by the Berkeley Food Institute, with a different set of topics on the agenda. Grassroots leaders from across the food system gathered to discuss policy, politics, and potential—and specifically which issues should be included in this next farm bill, with a focus on those that are traditionally left out of the bill.

Attendees and presenters—who included a range of policy experts and community leaders in agricultural communities—discussed a wide range of topics, including rural development, antitrust policy, the experiences of farmworkers, and the obstacles still faced by minority farmers. Much of the discussion centered on funding—or lack thereof—for these and other matters of most interest to small-scale producers and rural communities. Indeed, rural development only received 0.02 percent of Farm Bill funding in 2014.

Instead, the Farm Bill typically prioritizes the needs of large-scale, conventional growers. Those priorities are reflected in whose testimony is heard on the Hill, and in continued expansion of subsidies, crop insurance, and credit programs that benefit the wealthiest and largest farmers.

The goal of this summit, then, according to moderator Garrett Graddy-Lovelace, an assistant professor at American University, was “to broaden the conversation on [the Farm Bill],” to bring new voices into the conversation, and “to inform it, so as to reform it, or even to transform it.”

The tensions between small- and large-scale farmers are only exacerbated by the fact that rural voters are increasingly disillusioned with President Donald Trump, whom they helped to elect, and that many environmental and conservation programs may face dramatic cuts in the President’s coming budget. Since the summit, President Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue, was confirmed, and President Trump released the Presidential Executive Order on Promoting Agriculture and Rural Prosperity in America. But there’s no indication yet that either of these advancements will directly benefit small-scale farmers.

Combating Corporate Consolidation

Among the key priorities the group identified is food industry consolidation. While the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has addressed this issue through some policy measures, it’s never taken center stage. And it hasn’t been a priority in how the bill’s funds are allocated, a trend that will likely continue this year.

Over the past several decades, consolidation has been the cornerstone of Big Ag. A steady stream of mergers and acquisitions has resulted in more than 80 percent of beef slaughter, 50 percent of chicken processing, and 45 percent of beer production being handled by as few as four large companies.

“There should be a branch of the USDA that talks about competition,” said Patty Lovera, assistant director of Food & Water Watch, during her presentation. “That’s not really anyone’s job” right now.

The closest the USDA has gotten to explicitly addressing consolidation is through the Grain Inspection, Packers, and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA), a program meant to enforce the Packers & Stockyards Act (PSA). The PSA, passed in 1921, aims to uphold competitive markets in the livestock sector, but food industry trade groups lobbied Congress to defund GIPSA for several years.

GIPSA finally managed to introduce some rulemaking in the midnight hours of the Obama administration, but those rules—which would offer protections for chicken farmers who contract with vertically integrated poultry processors—have been repeatedly delayed under the Trump administration.

Lovera wasn’t alone in considering the effects of economic concentration. “Consolidation of the industry has had a huge impact on rural communities,” said Ben Burkett, director of the Mississippi Association of Cooperatives and the president of the National Family Farm Coalition. There used to be a proliferation of mom-and-pop seed stores, he said, but Monsanto drove them out of business. Continued consolidation in the seed sector has meant that prices have risen and farmers are increasingly tied to one of just three or four companies in the sector.

Support for Female Farmers and Farmers of Color

Another hot topic at the summit was how to use the Farm Bill to offer more support to minority farmers. Dr. Joe Leonard, who headed the USDA’s Office of Civil Rights during the Obama administration, lauded his department for making a “generation’s worth of change” in eight years. But he acknowledged that USDA still has a long way to go in addressing historical and ongoing under-representation of minority farmers in its programs. For instance, he said, people of color on average only apply to around seven USDA programs, when the Department offers over 200.

Rudy Arredondo, president of the National Latino Farmers and Ranchers Trade Association, agreed that USDA could do more to support farmers of color. “The hoops we have to go through are just incredible,” he said, speaking to the experience of his members, who are mostly small-scale producers and face obstacles including accessing grant programs and land.

Support for minority farmers has appeared in the Farm Bill before. The 2008 Farm Bill included provisions that settled a $1.25 billion class-action lawsuit between USDA and Black farmers. And although the USDA does manage programs tailored to recruiting and assisting woman and minority farmers, including the Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers program, the 2014 Farm Bill cut that program’s funding in half, to $10 million.

Outside the Farm Bill, progress is happening on this front: Earlier this month, Democrats in California’s state Assembly introduced the Farmer Equity Act, which would give farmers of color more support from the state’s Department of Food and Agriculture.

Improving Farmworker Wages and Working Conditions

With the current climate of fear and anti-immigrant policies as a backdrop, farmworker wages and working conditions were another important point of discussion at the summit.

“It would be a folly not to think about labor issues” alongside other Farm Bill issues, said Jessica Felix-Romero, director of communications for Farmworker Justice. “The Farm Bill can create the [solutions] to address what farmworkers face.”

And yet there is scant mention of farmworkers in the bill. There have been attempts to write provisions that could improve on-farm working conditions, such as the Charter for a Healthy Farm Bill, written by the Institute of Agriculture and Trade Policy for the 2014 Farm Bill. But the final bill ultimately reduced funding for projects that assist farmworkers.

It’s still too early to say whether the 2018 Farm Bill will better reflect the needs of farmworkers, minority farmers, or communities struggling to stay afloat in a consolidated farm economy. Yet the urgency remains to push forward for a more inclusive bill. “For those of us who work in rural America on the ground, this is not just theoretical,” said Rudy Arredondo.

Leonard echoed that sentiment, making it clear that in his view, the stakes are high for the next Farm Bill to include better policy for all farmers. “If we don’t succeed, the bread basket of the world closes,” he said, “and the world doesn’t succeed.”


National Latino Farmers & Ranchers Trade Association 
Washington, DC 20016
Office: (202) 628-8833
Fax No.: (202) 393-1816
Twitter: @NLFRTA
Website: www.NLFRTA.org 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

2017. DHHS. Cultural and Linguistic Competency in Disaster Preparedness and Response Fact Sheet

https://www.phe.gov/Preparedness/planning/abc/Pages/linguistic-facts.aspx



U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Cultural and Linguistic Competency in Disaster Preparedness and Response Fact Sheet

The racial and ethnic diversity of the United States population is increasing, necessitating an inclusive and integrated approach to disaster preparedness, response, and recovery activities. This approach ensures that culturally and linguistically diverse populations are not overlooked or misunderstood, and receive appropriate services as needed.
The National Standards for Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate Services in Health and Health Care (CLAS Standards), issued by the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Minority Health (OMH), offer individuals working in the areas of emergency management, public health, and other health-related organizations a framework for developing and implementing culturally and linguistically competent policies, programs, and services.  Cultural competency is defined as “the ability of individuals and systems to respond respectfully and effectively to people of all cultures, classes, races, ethnic backgrounds, sexual orientations, and faiths or religions in a manner that recognizes, affirms, and values the worth of individuals, families, tribes, and communities, and protects and preserves the dignity of each.1
Developing cultural and linguistic competency allows public health officials and emergency managers to better meet the needs of diverse populations and to improve the quality of services and health outcomes during and after a disaster.  To be effective, however, cultural and linguistic competency must be included in all phases of a disaster or public health emergency – preparedness, response, and recovery.
Five Elements of Cultural Competency within Disaster Preparedness
  1. Awareness and Acceptance of Difference: Responders and survivors are often different in their racial, ethnic and/or language characteristics.  By improving communication skills as well as becoming self-aware of potential biases and stereotypes, however, public health officials and emergency managers can provide quality care to diverse populations in a culturally competent manner.

    ExampleNot all cultures react to pain in the same way.  While the experience of pain is universal, the way of perceiving, expressing, and controlling pain is one of these learned behaviors, that when manifested, is culture-specific.2  An example of cultural competency is a public health official’s and an emergency manager’s self-awareness of expectations associated with how an individual expresses pain or stress.
  2. Awareness of One’s Own Cultural Values: Examining personal prejudices and cultural stereotypes by performing an individual self-assessment can help public health officials and emergency managers become aware of their own cultural values and biases.

    Example: The Valuing Diversity and Self-Assessment questionnaire3 is a widely used self-assessment that allows individuals to identify their own strengths and weaknesses when working with or treating populations with backgrounds different than their own.  For example, immigrant and refugee populations may speak a language other than English, have different cultural norms, come from a different socioeconomic background, and have a different style of dress.  Recognizing and respecting cultural differences and understanding your own biases and beliefs are critical to effectively serving or assisting culturally diverse populations during or after an emergency.
  3. Understanding and Managing the “Dynamics of Difference”: This refers to the various ways cultures express and interpret information.  Taking an individual’s medical history is a systematic way to collect both medical and cultural information. This information promotes cultural understanding and improves the quality of services provided to the individual.

    Example: The RESPOND tool4 succinctly defines the key components of taking the medical history of culturally and linguistically diverse populations.
    R – Build rapport
    – Explain your purpose
    – Identify services & elaborate
    – Encourage individuals to be proactive
    O – Offer assistance for individuals to identify their needs
    – Negotiate what is normal to help identify needs
    D – Determine next steps
  4. Development of Cultural Knowledge: Cultivating a working knowledge of different health and illness related beliefs, customs, and treatments of cultural groups in your local area can better equip public health officials and emergency managers with the information necessary to provide timely and appropriate services.

    Example: Research illustrates that racial and ethnic minorities are disproportionately vulnerable to, and impacted by, disasters.5,6,7  Minority communities also recover more slowly after disasters because they are more likely to experience cultural barriers and receive inaccurate or incomplete information as a result of cultural differences or language barriers.
  5. Ability to Adapt Activities to Fit Different Cultural Contexts: This concept refers to the ability to adapt and as appropriate, to modify, the services offered to fit the cultural context of the patients and communities you are serving.

    Example: Increasingly, the role of disaster personnel includes involvement with interpreters during the triadic interview.8 A triadic interview is a process in which people with limited English proficiency can communicate their needs in the language of their choice and the interpreter relays this information to the disaster personnel.  This process fosters mutual understanding and builds trust between the survivor and the responder.

Need more information? 

OMH’s Think Cultural Health initiative provides resources pertinent to emergency management and the provision of culturally and linguistically appropriate services.  The Health Care Language Services Implementation Guide and the Cultural Competency Curriculum for Disaster Preparedness and Crisis Response provide valuable tools for the implementation of language access services as well as skill-building for public health and emergency managers when working with interpreters and translation organizations.



1 National Technical Assistance and Evaluation Center. Cultural Competency. Child Welfare Information Gateway, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; 2009. Accessed 12 March 2015. 
2 Good MJD, Brodwin PE, Good BJ, Kleinman A, editors. Pain as a Human Experience: An Anthropological Perspective. Berkley: University of California Press; 1992.
Rasmussen, Tina. The American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) Trainer’s Sourcebook on Diversity. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill, 1995.
4 For more information about the RESPOND tool, review the Cultural Competency Curriculum for Disaster Preparedness and Crisis Response.
5 Davidson, TM, Price M, McCauley JL, Ruggiero KJ, Disaster Impact Across Cultural Groups: Comparison of Whites, African Americans, and Latinos. American Journal of Community Psychology. 2013;52(1-2):97-105.
Bethel, JW, Burke, SC, Britt, AF. Disparity in disaster preparedness between racial/ethnic groups. Disaster Health. 2013;1(2):110-16.
7 Collins, TW, Jimenez AM, Grineski SE. Hispanic Health Disparities After a Flood Disaster: Results of a Population-Based Survey of Individuals Experiencing Home Site Damage in El Paso (Texas, USA). Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health. 2013;15(2):415-26.
8 For more information about the triadic interview, review the Cultural Competency Curriculum for Disaster Preparedness and Crisis Response.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

What if your community had a Volunteer Fire/EMS Stations? Job Opportunities.

Job Opportunities:  Firefighter.  Prince George's County Maryland


  • What if your community had a volunteer Fire/EMS Station composed of members (high school to adult) of your community? 
  • Would they be qualified?  
  • Anywhere in the U.S.?
  • Is DHS\FEMA funding available to establish a volunteer Fire\EMS Station?  


Check the BEMA International web\blog page, and previous posting on 2017 Pre-Disaster funding.

BEMA International




                    Click here for additional information



Saturday, July 22, 2017

2017 August-November DHS\FEMA Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) Funding

The Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for the Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) grant program for fiscal year 2017 has been released!

The PDM program is a yearly, competitive grant program that is authorized by Congress and administered by FEMA. 

The total amount of funds to be distributed under FY17 PDM is $90,000,000.  FEMA’s grant priorities change on a yearly basis; this year FEMA is prioritizing multi-state/tribal mitigation activities and planning activities.


Federally recognized Native American Tribal governments
Each State, Territory, Commonwealth, or Native American Tribal government shall designate one agency to serve as the applicant for PDM funding. Each applicant’s designated agency may submit only one PDM grant application to FEMA. Applications under which two or more entities would carry out the award are eligible, such as a multi-state or multi-tribal initiative; however, only one entity may be the applicant with primary responsibility for carrying out the award.

Local governments, including cities, townships, counties, special district governments, and Native American tribal organizations are considered subapplicants and must submit subapplications for mitigation planning and projects to their State/Territory applicant agency. Contact information for the State Hazard Mitigation Officers (SHMOs) is provided on the FEMA website: http://www.fema.gov/state-hazard-mitigation-officers.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Why the push for Youth Preparedness in Conjunction with Hip Hop Architecture?

Add CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) training for students at the middle and high school level in our urban and rural communities as an addition to your nonprofit, and other programs in our cities for at risk and other youth programs.

Why the push for future leaders in our urban\rural communities involvement with CERT in conjunction with the spread of Hip-Hip Architecture and other youth programs?

            To be at the table.


The FEMA Youth Preparedness Council was formed in 2012 to bring together high school-age youth leaders from across the country who are interested and engaged in emergency preparedness. The Council members are selected based on their dedication to public service, community involvement, and their potential to expand their impact as supporters of youth preparedness.



Black Emergency Managers Association
           International
1231  Good Hope Road  S.E.
Washington, D.C.  20020
Office:   202-618-9097 
bEMA International 
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“Our lives are not our own. We are bound to others, past and present, and by each crime and every kindness, we birth our future.” ¯ David Mitchell, Cloud Atlas
Cooperation, Collaboration, Communication, Coordination, Community engagement, and  Partnering (C5&P)             A 501 (c) 3 organization.



Thursday, July 20, 2017

2017. How Disasters Affect People of Low Socioeconomic Status (SES)

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Supplemental Research Bulletin:

How Disasters Affect People of Low Socioeconomic Status (SES)

This issue of the Supplemental Research Bulletin explores how people in poverty, with low incomes, and of low SES experience disasters—and, in doing so, aims to help disaster behavioral health officials include and account for these individuals in disaster planning and preparedness, response, and recovery. The issue also features recommendations for policy changes to foster increased resilience for low SES individuals and communities.


Read past issues of the Supplemental Research Bulletin.