(703) 379-2475 - Office, (703) 244-6746 - Cell
4201 S. 31st Street, #110, Arlington, Virginia 22206
Photography Website: www.BainbridgeNewsPhotos.com

FEMA Breaks Down Communication Barriers On The Road To Sandy Recovery

Hurricane Sandy survivors in New Jersey live in one of the most culturally diverse states in the country and communicate in numerous languages. The Federal Emergency Management Agency works to reach all of them.

People with disabilities and/or access and functional needs are now the focus of the first full-scale operation by FEMA to offer ready access to valuable disaster assistance and recovery information in all disaster recovery centers.

Survivors can visit any disaster recovery center to connect with American Sign Language or Signed English interpreters either face to face by requesting it ahead of time, or in real time using Video Relay Services or Video Remote Interpreters.

Assistive listening devices, amplified phones and caption phones for survivors who are deaf or hard of hearing are available in the centers, as well as magnifying devices and printed information in Braille and large print for people who are blind or have low vision.

Teams of FEMA Community Relations specialists – armed with publications in English, Spanish, Chinese, Italian, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Urdu, French and Braille – canvassed communities affected by Hurricane Sandy. The teams are going door to door to deliver valuable recovery information and to encourage residents with damaged property to register for assistance.

To date, FEMA has translated more than a dozen disaster assistance fliers, brochures and pamphlets into 23 different languages.

Since the major disaster declaration for Hurricane Sandy, more than 650 Community Relations specialists have been in New Jersey, including more than 220 FEMA Corps members. Four dozen of these specialists were bilingual or multilingual, speaking a combined total of 24 languages including American Sign Language.

Multilingual specialists also maintain contact with media outlets whose audience consists mainly of non-English-speaking readers, listeners, or viewers. Spanish-speaking public information officers from FEMA have given dozens of interviews to Spanish-language media, appeared on radio talk shows and spoken with community groups across the affected area.

Hurricane Sandy recovery updates are available in English and Spanish on the agency’s website, which is also designed for use by people with sensory disabilities. Spanish-speaking survivors can choose to follow FEMAespanol on Twitter to receive recovery updates.

Groups, associations and businesses that have non-English-speaking members who sustained damage as a result of Hurricane Sandy and who want to know more about federal and state disaster assistance can contact FEMA’s Speakers Bureau for presentations in 13 languages, if needed. Sign language interpreters are also available.

Multilingual telephone operators are available to help non-English-speaking survivors register for disaster aid and to get their questions answered. After dialing FEMA’s helpline at 800-621-3362 or TTY 800-462-7585, callers can choose Option 3 for other languages. FEMA can provide interpretation services in 250 languages. Those who use 711-Relay or Video Relay Services can call 800-621-3362.

FEMA’s multilingual webpage at www.fema.gov/all-languages offers a wealth of disaster assistance information and Ready.gov can be viewed in 12 languages.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)


About Edited by Susan Bainbridge

At age 6, Susan was destined to be a journalist and photographer.  In 1980, Susan founded Bainbridge News and The Bainbridge Chronicle Newspaper. Bainbridge News specializes in Military and National Politics, including Military Funerals and Burials and Political Funerals and Burials.  Susan has covered the White House, the Pentagon and Capitol Hill. She has covered every president from Ronald Reagan to Barack Obama. Recognized for her versatility, Susan has also covered finance, crime, civil rights events, marches, sports, musical events and more. In 1990, she established Bainbridge Photography, an On-Location photography company. In addition to military and political events, including Military and Political funerals and burials, Bainbridge Photography expanded into covering ALL funerals and burials, receptions, weddings, real estate, inventory, insurance, portrait, head shot, pets, fire and Hazmat.  Miss Bainbridge believes in going the extra mile. "My Clients always come first." In 1980, Susan began her career in Washington, D.C., working for WMZQ Radio as a reporter and guest hostess from 1980 to 1985. Intrigued by radio, Susan wanted to write, freelancing for radio, television and print newspapers, including AP, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Northern Virginia Sun, The Press-Republican and The Bainbridge Chronicle (established by Susan Bainbridge). In 1986, Susan worked at WDCA-TV Channel 20 as a guest hostess for "Eye On Washington." From 1990 to 1994, Susan reported and anchored for "The Arlington Weekly News." Additionally, she produced a segment for the G. Gordon Liddy Radio Show. A prolific writer, while in high school in 1977, Bainbridge wrote an episode for NBC's "Little House on The Prairie" entitled "Laura's Best Friend." Though the show's producers did not use the script then, NBC producers encouraged Susan to pursue a writing and journalism career. Susan is a member of the National Press Club, the National Press Photographer's Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. Susan Bainbridge's recognitions include from former Presidents Ronald Reagan, George Herbert Walker Bush and Bill Clinton, former First Lady Nancy Reagan, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, the late actor Lorne Greene, among many others. BAINBRIDGE NEWS was founded in 1980 by Susan Bainbridge (a sixth generation writer), a third generation journalist, a first generation photographer and a fourth generation entrepreneur. She is the first generation to establish a news business. Bainbridge News is dedicated in honor of Miss Bainbridge's late grandfather and idol, Mark S. Watson (The Baltimore Sun editor and war correspondent from 1920 to his death in 1966).

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.

Wordpress webhosting and development by 2by2host.com