Is Your Shelter Accessible?
Did you know that the disability-related needs of people who are not medically fragile can typically be met in a mass care shelter?
One of the primary responsibilities of state and local governments is to protect residents and visitors from harm, including assistance in preparing for, responding to, and recovering form emergencies and disasters. State and local governments must comply with Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The ADA requires people with disabilities to be accommodated in the most integrated setting appropriate to their needs.
To comply with the ADA's integration requirement, emergency managers and shelter operators need to plan to house people with a variety of disabilities in mainstream mass care shelters, including those with disability related needs for some medical care, medication, equipment, and supportive services. Emergency managers and shelter operators must also ensure that eligibility criteria for mass care shelters do not unnecessarily screen out people with disabilities who are not medically fragile based on erroneous assumptions about the care and accommodations they require.