How and Why Biden and FEMA Expand Helping Florida Hurricane Recovery

When managing a crisis, it may be necessary to provide additional resources to deal with the situation. And when these additional steps are taken, the best practice for crisis communication is to keep people up to date with it.

In the wake of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Ian last week, President Joe Biden and FEMA have done both.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency announced yesterday That Biden granted an additional 30 days of 100% federal funding for debris removal and emergency protection measures. The administration said this will ensure that the first 60 days of response and recovery are all federally funded.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) also said that:

Updates

In the same announcement, FEMA provided the following updates on its disaster recovery efforts:

  • Disaster unemployment assistance is available to eligible survivors.
  • Federal Emergency Management Nutrition Partners provided 1 million meals to survivors.
  • More than 2,800 FEMA employees are supporting Ian’s response efforts.
  • More than 1,300 other federal employees are helping with Ian’s response.
  • More than 1,800 emergency management personnel from 26 states have been deployed to Florida across Emergency Management Assistance CharterAnd the

Not the first rodeo

“FEMA’s response is a combination of providing legally authorized direct assistance to disaster survivors that takes the form of direct financial payments,” Clifford Oliver, former associate director of FEMA, said by email.

“This is neither the federal government nor Florida’s ‘first rodeo’. Both have decades of experience responding to similar disasters and know to apply lessons learned from previous responses. That’s something [their] Emergency managers generally excel at doing this.

“As the response phase begins to wind down, the recovery phase will intensify,” Oliver noted. Oliver predicted that the new phase would focus on ensuring that survivors were in a stable situation and that rebuilding or repairing damaged public facilities would begin.

Nothing new under the sun

“When it comes to mitigating, preparing for, responding, and recovering from a disaster or crisis, there is nothing new under the sun.” Oliver concluded that the well-established disaster life cycle applies to disaster planning, whether it is a government entity, individuals and families, or business owners.

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