ABA Endorses White Paper on Disaster Mitigation Policies

Today, the American Bar Association endorsed the Effective National Mitigation Effort, a white paper on national mitigation prepared by the Association of the Directors of Emergency Management of the U.S. States and Territories and the District of Columbia. The White Paper is a concise statement outlining concerns, opportunities and strategies to mitigate damages from "hazards" and "harms": Mitigation is not an isolated or unique activity for any single level of government, private sector, or funding source. Mitigation is a pervasive activity that needs to include the broadest range of participants, making widely available the most current and accurate hazard identification information. Mitigation should be demand driven from the communities where it makes the most difference. It is in the interest of decision makers at the higher levels of government to use their dollars to promote and incentivize a comprehensive and systematic approach for mitigation to be implemented at the local community level. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, disaster preparedness, mitigation and response is a cross-jurisdictional, complex, but surmountable problem. The State and Local Government Section has been on the leading edge of these efforts and this is another good step to better prepare our governments and societies for future incidents.

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