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Rich Serino addresses Rebuilding Sustainable Communities conference

Published on 16 July 2010
Special concern should be given on disabled and old people in disaster recovery programmes
Post disaster focus should be given on old and the disabled, Photo: FEMA, Katie Hager 

The conference also included other speakers from FEMA, including Marcie Roth, Senior Advisory on Disability Issues, and multiple division directors and experts from FEMA's Region I office in Boston.

FEMA Deputy Administrator, and former Chief of Boston Emergency Medical Services and Assistant Director of the Boston Public Health Commission, spoke at a conference put on in partnership with the John W. McCormack Graduate School of Policy Studies at the University of Massachusetts Boston. The international conference entitled Rebuilding Sustainable Communities with the Elderly and Disabled People after Disasters focuses on the importance of addressing the needs of the entire community in recovery and rebuilding efforts post-disaster. The conference runs July 12-15, 2010, in McCormack Hall at UMass Boston.

"FEMA is just one part of the entire national emergency response team, which includes the entire federal family, the private sector, faith-based, academic and other non-profit organizations, and especially the public," said Deputy Administrator Serino. "Only by engaging all members of our team, and planning for the entire community, can our team be successful. This conference is a great opportunity to reach out to our stakeholders and hear from academics and students about what communities can do before, during and after a disaster to respond and recover more effectively."

The conference also included other speakers from FEMA, including Marcie Roth, Senior Advisory on Disability Issues, and multiple division directors and experts from FEMA's Region I office in Boston. They are participating in panel discussions on a board array of topics, including, providing comfort and support to elderly and disabled people in response and recovery, and mitigating natural hazards risks facing the elderly and special needs populations.

The conference falls days before the 20th anniversary of the enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act, on July 26, 2010.

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