California is no stranger to disasters. The California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) wants to ensure the access and functional needs (AFN) community can respond quickly when disaster strikes.
While emergencies are challenging, each Californian has different needs when preparing for a disaster. It’s important to identify your individual needs and plan according to those needs.
Disaster preparation for AFN community members begins with trusted family members, friends, or healthcare providers who can make sure their needs will be met under any circumstance. Identify at least four people who can assist during a crisis and make sure you talk through a plan with everyone.
Safety guidelines to help prepare Californians in the AFN community:
People with Developmental Disabilities
- Identify reliable allies
- Create a plan together
- Practice the plan so everyone feels safe
People with Mobility or Physical Disabilities
- Plan for transportation
- Have a plan if ramps and rails are damaged
- Evacuate as soon as possible to give extra time
People with Communication Disabilities
- Carry a card with how to communicate
- Carry communication devices, phrase cards, or picture boards
- Know how to replace assistive devices if lost or damaged
Packing a Go-Kit
In addition to having your basic survival supplies, an emergency kit should have items to meet your individual needs in various emergencies. Consider the items you use every day and which ones you may need to add to your kit.