Get Ready Get Safe

Of all the important issues I have shared through Global Team of 200, this one is the scariest.  I have been putting off this post because I wanted to make sure I approached it the best way to make the most impact.  So, here it goes…

Save the Children recently released their annual disaster report card.  However, 28 states and the District of Columbia still do not have measures in place to protect our children in case of a natural disaster, tragedy, or emergency!  Twenty-eight states and D.C.

Every workday, 68 million children are separated from their parents.  We owe it to these children to protect them before the next disaster strikes.”

~Carolyn Miles, President & CEO of Save the Children

After Hurricane Katrina, in 2005, the nation came to the realization how unprepared the United States was for a major disaster.  Children are especially as risk.  Consider this:  It took 6 months to reunite the last child with her family.  SIX MONTHS.  After Hurricane Katrina, the President appointed the National Commission on Children and Disaster spearheaded by Save the Children to recommend minimum standards to protect children.

DisasterReport20132.jpg

Save the Children issued the first disaster report card in 2008.  FOUR states passed their minimum standards.  Since then, the number has increased to 22.  However, most of the states AND the nation’s capital fall short.

The requirements that are measures are: states require all child care centers to have 1) an evacuation plan, 2) a family reunification plan, and 3) a plan for children with special needs, and 4) that states require all schools to have disaster plans that account for multiple types of hazards.

Hmmmm… doesn’t seem like too much to ask, does it?

Save the Children has issued their new report entitled, “Unaccounted For:  A National Report Card on Protecting Children in Disaster.”  (You can read it by clicking the link.)  It is a very shocking and sad report– that there are easily corrected issues in emergency preparedness, response, and recovery.

Save the Children is asking every single American to urge their governors to meet the report card standards, and ensure the emergency preparedness and response plans are in place and practiced.  Save the Children has launched a new initiative called “Get Ready.  Get Safe.” to help families and communities protect their children during an emergency or disaster.

Superstorm Sandy: Child Friendly Space
Save the Children staff member Jeanne-Aimee DeMarrais wraps a blanket around 4 -year-old Didi at the shelter in the Atlantic City Convention Center.

So, here’s the deal.  I am BEGGING YOU to go to the website.  See where your state ranks.  Then, contact your governor.  All you have to do is click the link… check your state and you can send a letter right from the page!  

Here is Ohio’s report card.  It makes me sick to my stomach.  Ohio does not a plan requirement to help children with disabilities.

ohio

Read the full report and take action at http://www.savethechildren.org/Get-Ready

See how your state measures up at http://www.savethechildren.org/site/c.8rKLIXMGIpI4E/b.8777049/k.FE2A/Get_Ready_Get_Safe_US_Preparedness_Map.htm

Follow Save the Children on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest.

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3 thoughts on “Get Ready Get Safe

  1. I would have never imagined that after the recent natural disasters such as hurricane katrina and sandy that both federal and state government would continue to let children go unprotected during these events. Really seems like a simple thing to ask of our leaders, every child and parent should have the security knowing that in the unfortunate circumstance of a disaster that there are adequate plans in place to ensure the safety of every child.

  2. Thank you for putting this issue into perspective. Your candor touched me deeply. I wrote a post about this issue, but you have me rethinking these horrible statistics and how they affect our children

    1. Thanks for stopping by. It bothered me so much I literally lost sleep over it and have been walking around the house muttering about it. I’m fired up.

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