The National Council on Disability (NCD) will hear presentations on emergency preparedness for people with disabilities at the New Orleans Marriott Convention Center, New Orleans, Louisiana, January 29, 2008.

The primary focus of these presentations will be to gather information and listen to presentations from stakeholders and professionals as well as to receive public comment on emergency preparedness, homeland security, and other issues of importance to people with disabilities. Under the Homeland Security Appropriations Bill (H.R. 5441) signed by President Bush on October 4, 2006, NCD was assigned key responsibilities for disability-related issues in homeland security.

Speakers include:

  • Charles Tubre, Systems Advocacy Specialist, Advocacy Center, New Orleans, LA
  • Sandra Bookman, Executive Director, Houston Center for Independent Living, Houston, TX
  • Christy Dunaway, Executive Director, Living Independence For Everyone (LIFE) of Mississippi, Jackson, MS
  • Kay Wilkins, CEO, Southeast Louisiana Chapter, American Red Cross, Metairie, LA
  • Michael Hawley, Major and Area Commander, The Salvation Army, New Orleans, LA
  • Rebecca Floyd, Executive Director, Mississippi Protection and Advocacy System, Inc., Jackson, MS

The discussion will be followed by a question and answer session.

In 2003, NCD committed itself to evaluating the Federal Government's role in the areas of homeland security, emergency preparedness and disaster relief, as they relate to people with disabilities. This commitment occurred, in large measure, as a result of the man-made terrorist events of September 11, 2001, and the creation of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. NCD's first evaluation findings were issued in April 2005 in the report, Saving Lives: Including People with Disabilities in Emergency Planning.