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Program explores how disasters impact communities of color

August 24, 2020

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has predicted that the 2020 hurricane season will bring 19-25 named storms. Add in California wildfires, the aftereffects of a derecho hitting the Midwest and the ongoing pandemic, and the nation is facing the need for disaster recovery efforts on several fronts. 

Yet while disasters do not discriminate, recovery does. Studies show that communities of color face particular struggles after natural disasters.

An upcoming ABA program will address how race affects policy considerations in disaster recovery.

An upcoming ABA program will address how race affects policy considerations in disaster recovery.

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The ABA Standing Committee on Disaster Response and Preparedness will examine this issue in a virtual program called “Black Lives Matter (In Disasters, Too) – The Intersection of Race and Policy in Disasters” on Tuesday, Sept. 1, from 1-2:30 p.m. CT.

A panel of experts will discuss the policy considerations of recovery, the intersection of race and policy in disasters and how the confluence of COVID-19 and future disasters may impact this issue. Panelists include Curtis Brown, co-founder of the Institute for Diversity and Inclusion in Emergency Management in Atlanta; Abre’ Conner, staff attorney at the ACLU of Northern California; Junia Howell, assistant professor of sociology at the University of Pittsburgh; Monica Sanders, associate professor of sociology and criminal justice at the University of Delaware and lecturer at Georgetown University Law Center.

ABA President Patricia Lee Refo will give opening remarks and former ABA president Paulette Brown, senior partner and chief diversity and inclusion officer at Locke Lorde, will moderate.

The program, co-sponsored by the ABA Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice and the ABA Coalition on Racial and Ethnic Justice, is the first of a five-part series during the month of September that is being presented in recognition of National Preparedness Month.

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