Council boosting disaster readiness for vulnerable residents

The 2021 Local Disaster Management Plan has new features to improve access to risk reduction measures for residents with a disability in the event of storms, fires and floods.

The updated Plan includes alternative text, graphs and images to assist those with vision impairment and using screen readers, while resources to assist in preparing Person-Centered Emergency Plans are now available online as part of council’s Disability Inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction Framework.

Local Disaster Management Group Chair Mayor Teresa Harding said council is focused on continuous improvement in disaster planning.

“We place the community at the forefront of everything we do at council. That means building a deep understanding of who our residents are and how they work and live when developing a plan to respond to natural disasters,” Mayor Harding said.

“At the last census, 17 per cent of Ipswich residents reported having a disability or caring for someone who does.

“The 2021 Local Disaster Management Plan includes innovation to ensure our most vulnerable residents are prepared, and elevates the framework to collaborate with the Rural Fire Service in protecting our community, native species and culturally significant sites.”

Local Disaster Management Group Deputy Chair Councillor Kate Kunzelmann said council is committed to ensuring that, when the need arises, both council and the community are prepared to act in a way that is coordinated and effective.

“The 2021 Local Disaster Management Plan outlines the arrangements for the coordination and management of resources in a disaster and ensure the safety of the Ipswich community prior to, during and after a disaster,” Cr Kunzelmann said.

“The addition of the Disability Inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction measures means council is making sure the needs and voices of people with disability were included in the framework because all of our residents have to have a practical plan in place for when disaster strikes.”

The 2021 Local Disaster Management Plan will be made available on council’s website after it is endorsed by the Disaster Management Group in August.

For more information on council’s initiatives for Disability Inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction, visit

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