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People with Disabilities or Access & Functional Needs

Who is Our Access and Functional Needs Community

In order to remain consistent with FEMA and the California Emergency Management Agency, Access and Functional Needs Populations are defined as those whose members may have additional needs before, during and after an incident in functional areas, including but not limited to: maintaining independence, communication, transportation, supervision, and medical care. Individuals in need of additional response assistance may include those who have disabilities, live in institutionalized settings, are elderly, are children, are from diverse cultures, have limited English proficiency, or are non-English speaking, or are transportation disadvantaged. An individual with a disability is defined by the ADA as a person who had a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, a person who has a history or record of such an impairment, or a person who is perceived by others as having such an impairment. The ADA does not specifically name all of the impairments that are covered.

If you or someone close to you has a disability and other access and functional needs, you may have to take additional steps to protect yourself and your family in an emergency.

Access and Functional Needs | Additional Steps

Visually Impaired May be extremely reluctant to leave familiar surroundings when the request for evacuation comes from a stranger. A guide dog could become confused or disoriented in a disaster. People who are blind or partially sighted may have to depend on others to lead them, as well as their dog, to safety during a disaster.

Deaf and Hard of Hearing May need to make special arrangements to receive warnings

Mobility Impaired May need special assistance to get to a shelter.

Single working Parent May need help to plan for disasters and emergencies.

Non-English speaking persons May need assistance planning for and responding to emergencies. Community and cultural groups may be able to help keep people informed.

People without vehicles May need to make arrangements for transportation.

People with special dietary needs Should take special precautions to have an adequate emergency food supply.

People with medical conditions Should know the location and availability of more than one facility if dependent on a dialysis machine or other life-sustaining equipment or treatment.

People with intellectual disabilities May need help responding to emergencies and getting to a shelter.

People with Dementia Should be registered in the Alzheimer’s Association Safe Return Program.





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