Articles, Research and Media Releases

Disability inclusive disaster preparedness in nsw

This video explores how communities across the state are making sure the needs and voices of people with disabilities are included in all stages of disaster management planning. This project is a partnership led by the University of Sydney’s Centre for Disability Research and Policy and School of Geosciences, and is funded under the 2014 joint State/Commonwealth Natural Disaster Resilience Scheme.


How Do We Expect People with Disabilities to Evacuate?

This article raises the question of how people with disability which affects their mobility are able to evacuate buildings when the options or evacuation in a multi-level building are generally limited to stairways only.  The article discusses the obligations under of the UN Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities for universal design.  To read the full article please click here

In Emergencies, People With Disabilities Often An Afterthought

Article discussing the issues faced by people with disability when their needs are not considered and addressed during emergencies.

To read the full article please click here


More Planning Needed for Vulnerable During Disasters

Socially vulnerable people are being put at increasing risk due to a lack of planning around their needs during disasters and emergencies, Victorian Council of Social Service has revealed.

To read the full article please click here

4 steps to plan for an emergency - Easy English

Written by the Australian Red Cross, this document is written in easy english to help guide individuals into how to obtain information about emergencies and also guides individuals on planning for emergencies.

To read the full document please click here

People with disability should be included as equal partners in disaster planning

One of the ways to include people with disability in disaster risk reduction planning and preparation is by enabling them to take leadership.  This article discusses projects that have been undertaken where people with disability have been taking an active role in disaster risk reduction.  

To read the full article please click here

Christchurch Community Action

This video developed by IHC New Zealand looks at the local action around natural disaster preparedness that has taken place since the 2011 Earthquake. 'Christchurch Earthquake Reflection Group- Shaken but not Stirred' shows individuals with disabilities taking active roles in emergency planning.  

Lisa bush fire tree.JPG

This article highlights the risk people with disability are exposed to during bushfires with their vulnerability being significantly increased.  The article includes a personal story of a woman with disability who during the bush fires in 1994, was evacuated in the back of a truck, having to leave essential equipment behind.

To read the full article please click here

International Day for Disaster Reduction

In 2013 the focus of the International Day for Disaster Reduction (13 October 2013) was on some one billion people around the world who live with some form of disability. Representing one-fifth of the world's population, people living with disability have unique contributions, often overlooked, to help reduce the risk of disasters and build resilient societies and communities.

The website provides videos of events involved in the day, resources and links to partnerships involved in increasing the safety of people with disability in disaster situations.

To view the website please click here

Research project: Bushfire Safety for People with Special Needs

Prepared by RMIT University and the Bushfire Cooperative Research Centre.  

The report is aimed for communities and agencies to focus on community safety in particular for people with increased needs with the threat of fire.  Reading this document gives examples of lived experience from the respondents who contributed to the researchers surveys.

To read the full document please click here

Experts urge focus on special needs - June 2007

Article discussing the experience of people with disability during the floods in New Orleans and the concern of lack of planning for people with disabilities.

To read the full article please click here

Emergency Evacuation for People with Disability Training Slides

This training was provided to the Advisory Access Committee of Ryde Council.  The slides detail legal obligations organisations have relating to evacuation.  It also provides some examples of PEEP (Personal Emergency Egress Plan).

To view the document please click here


Video: Great East Japan Earthquake: We, People with Disabilities, Have an Appeal to Make 

PDCN would like to thank Prof. Gwynnyth Llewellyn for providing these links.


Include all, Safety for all

Include All, Safety For All is a video produced by the Arbeiter Samariter Bund (ASB) Indonesia and the Centre for Disability, Research and Policy at the University of Sydney project, “Including People with Disabilities in Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Activities in Indonesia”, a project funded by Australian Aid.

The video is set in Indonesia, summarising the importance of disability inclusive disaster risk reduction, where people are actively involved in planning for disaster.  Inclusion of people with disability in planning for emergencies and disaster is something that will benefit people with disability worldwide.

For more information about the project please click here

No One Left Behind 

A pantomime performed by Deaf Art Community Indonesia for the International Day for Disaster Reduction 2013 at UN Headquarters, New York.

PDCN would like to thank Prof. Gwynnyth Llewellyn for providing these links.

Preparing Makes Sense for People With Disabilities and other Access and Functional Needs

Video made by Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), America


it's a scorcher: new site tracks heatwave across australia

An article discussing a new website that features an interactive map tracking heatwaves across Australia. The map shows locations where heatwaves have occurred and provides clickable links to temperatures records from over 100 weather stations. 

when the heat is on, we need city-wide plans to keep cool

An article exploring how cities can better plan for the increasingly frequent and intense heatwave conditions experienced across Australia.