FEMA has released its first-ever Post-Disaster Equity Guide for Local Officials Rebuilding Communities. The publication provides guidance for local officials working to understand and prepare for disaster recovery efforts, with an emphasis on promoting equity and accountability. The guide is organized around eight goals and addresses approaches for engaging with and identifying the needs of communities to ensure an accessible, inclusive, and equitable recovery.
NLIHC and its Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition (DHRC) offered comprehensive commentary in response to a draft of the guide released earlier this year. The comments stressed the importance of involving housing and homeless service organizations in recovery efforts, as well as incorporating continuous community feedback, empowering disaster-impacted community members, and adopting best practices for community engagement and inclusive recovery.
The final guide released by FEMA incorporates a significant number of the suggestions provided by NLIHC and the DHRC, making it an important tool for guiding community-centric recovery efforts in disaster-impacted communities across the country.