WASHINGTON, D.C. – Leaders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) on Friday extended an historic agreement to work together to plan and respond to future national emergencies through 2018.
The Memorandum of Agreement signed by NAACP President and CEO Cornell William Brooks and FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate extends the formal collaboration between the two organizations to partner on preparation and responses to natural and man-made disasters through July 2017. The original agreement was signed in 2013.
“From past lessons learned from Hurricane Katrina and other catastrophic events, and with the continuing threats of severe floods, hurricanes, wildfires and other disasters caused by climate change, it is essential that federal government planning and response reaches every community,” Brooks said. “Through systemic reform and mobilizing our networks of community-based volunteers, the NAACP will be working with FEMA to ensure that people affected by these tragedies are not left to fend for themselves.”
Under the two-year extension signed Friday, the civil rights organization and the federal agency will continue to collaborate at the national, state and local levels to ensure that communities of color are included in response planning for large emergencies, including hurricanes, floods, wildfires and tornadoes through training and participation on advisory planning groups.
“Providing basic needs and services after a disaster is not just the right thing to do for survivors — it’s also a civil right,” said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. “We’re proud to work alongside the NAACP as part of the national emergency management team and we look forward to continuing our partnership to make sure disaster support resources and services reach everyone at their great time of need.”
Through the partnership, NAACP membership will work with FEMA representatives to create response plans for emergencies by offering training and meeting regularly with local leaders, while the NAACP will help FEMA continue to implement inclusive and culturally competent systems, protocols, tools and practices at all levels, with a priority focus on ensuring the continuum of emergency management supports the right to return for all residents, and proactively prevents permanent displacement after a disaster event.
The NAACP hopes to work together with FEMA following a major disasters to identify and advocate for at-risk populations and help with relief efforts.
Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities. You can read more about the NAACP’s work and our six “Game Changer” issue areas here.