February Workshop to Examine Evacuation of Disabled

A Feb. 3-4 workshop in Washington, D.C., organized by the American National Standards Institute's Homeland Security Standards Panel (HSSP) with the National Organization on Disability's Emergency Preparedness Initiative and the National Fire Protection Association's Disability Access Review and Advisory Committee, will examine current and needed standards to further evaucation of disabled people during emergencies. The "Emergency Preparedness for Persons with Disabilities and Special Needs" workshop will be held at Gallaudet University, the Kellogg Conference Hotel.

ANSI President/CEO S. Joe Bhatia will deliver opening remarks before experts and attendees discuss standards that currently exist and in what areas new standards need to be developed. The event will produce actionable recommendations, according to ANSI, with two breakout groups at the workshop focused on these questions:

  • What standards are there for the built environment for the community of people with disabilities, and what standards are still needed?
  • What standards are there for evacuation operations and equipment for the community of people with disabilities, and what standards are still needed?

There is no fee to participate, but advance registration is required. To register, e-mail the name and contact information to [email protected] by Jan. 19, 2009.

Questions about the event can be directed to Jessica Carl, the HSSP program administrator, at [email protected] or 212-642-4903. The panel ws created by ANSI in February 2003 to work on consensus standards to meet identified homeland security needs. Co-Chairs are Christian Dubay, vice president and chief engineer of NFPA, and Gordon_Gillerman, conformity assessment advisor for homeland security at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Organizations that are members of the panel include Underwriters Laboratories Inc., AIHA, ASTM International, and the National Emergency Management Association.

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