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Steam Pipe Explosion in Midtown NYC Thursday, July 19 - Update

The City’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM) has been coordinating the inter-agency response to the steam pipe explosion on Lexington Avenue and 41st Street, in which one person died and many were injured. City agencies continue to operate in the area. Restricted access to the area in the immediate vicinity, known as the “Frozen Zone," remains at 41st Street between Park Avenue and Lexington Avenue and 100 feet around the immediate incident site. For additional information see articles under COMMUNITY NEWS & EVENTS.

:: NYDIS Distributes $195K in June: Biggest Month for 9/11 Unmet Needs

In June, the 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable awarded over $235,000 in cash assistance to 50 recovery workers and evacuees as well as $1,800 in travel in food vouchers to over 300 recovery workers at Mount Sinai Hospital's treatment program. This is the biggest month in awards in the 6-year history of the Roundtable. Moderated by NYDIS, the Roundtable provides a venue through which 9/11 Case Managers and donors meet to vet the cases of those impacted by 9/11 through a discussion of their unmet needs and long-term recovery plans. Assistance is provided on an as needed basis to support the sustainable long-term recovery of injured recovery workers or direct victims and their families. Additionally, through a partnership with the Mount Sinai Medical Monitoring and Treatment Program, NYDIS’ Recovery Program has provided food vouchers and Metrocards for transportation to and from medical appointments for needy patients. To inquire about Roundtable Assistance contact your caseworker.

Find a case manager on NYDIS’ website:
:: NYDIS Receives $90K Grant for NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable

NYDIS has received a $90,000 grant from the Orthodox Church in America, to be awarded as cash assistance to injured 9/11 recovery workers via the NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable. Any congregation, faith community, corporation or individual with an interest in sponsoring a fundraiser or donating cash to the ever increasing critical needs of injured recovery workers, should contact NYDIS.

Contact Benoît Jadoul, Director, Development:
:: NYDIS Closes NYC Katrina Recovery Program & NYC Unmet Needs Roundtable

On August 1, after two years of operations, the NYDIS Katrina Recovery Program and the NYC Katrina Unmet Needs Roundtable will close. Begun in September 2005, with the assistance of over 200 volunteers and staff, NYDIS distributed over $600,000 in new clothing to 1,000 Gulf Coast families that evacuated to NYC. Volunteers also conducted unmet needs assessments and exit interviews to over 2,000 families who visited the City's Disaster Assistance Service Center operated under the leadership of the NYC Office of Emergency Management (OEM). In August 2006 NYDIS and other partner agencies opened the NYC Katrina Unmet Needs Roundtable, modeled after the 9/11 Roundtable. A collaboration of donors include the American Red Cross, Black Equity Alliance, the Chadbourne & Parke Foundation, ERD, UMCOR, the Verrazano Rotary Club and many others who supported this effort. Case management and Roundtable leadership was provided by the American Red Cross, Catholic Charities of Brooklyn & Queens, the Human Services Council, The Salvation Army, and the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.

However, the ending of these programs is not a reflection of the lack of need within the Katrina-effected community - approximately 150 families with unmet needs remain in case management. Like many other programs around the Nation, NYDIS has been forced to close our Katrina programs due to the lack of adequate funding. It is our profound hope that the need of Katrina/Rita evacuees will not disappear from the collective consciousness of the recovery community or the American public - can you give more?

Contact Benoît Jadoul, Director, Development:
:: NYDIS VISTA Member’s Journey in Volunteerism Profiled by DNN

NYDISnetServing others before and after disasters is important to Alison VanBuskirk - important enough for the recent college graduate to devote the next year to do just that. Now serving twelve months in the NYDIS VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) program with communications as her program focus, Alison said volunteering throughout college inspired her to look for a service experience. She spent two spring breaks on service trips to New Orleans to assist with Katrina recovery. She had an urge to work in some type of AmeriCorps/VISTA after she graduated in June. “This position [involved] something I cared about a lot and was something that my work in college lended itself to," and she hopes to increase her disaster service skills through her work with NYDIS. Alison is one of 6 VISTAs currently serving at NYDIS.

Read the entire article:
:: NYDIS Launches Disaster Chaplain & Spiritual Care Worker Program

This fall NYDIS will launch a Disaster Chaplain and Spiritual Care Worker training, credentialing and deployment program for its member agencies. With $140,000 staff grant funding, NYDIS has begun a search for a full-time Chaplain to oversee the interfaith program which will be conducted in partnership with the Desmond Tutu Education Center. With a second grant of $50,000, NYDIS will also hire twelve chaplaincy experts to develop a model interfaith chaplaincy and spiritual care worker training and parallel train-the-trainer curriculum to develop the program’s operational structure for local and national use. NYDIS has committed to training a diverse culturally- and language-competent corps of 2,400 non-sectarian volunteer Chaplain Leaders, Chaplains and Spiritual Care Workers over the next 24 months. Look for updates in future issues of NYDISnet.

Questions? Contact Peter Gudaitis, Executive Director & CEO:

For details on the Coordinator, Disaster Chaplaincy & Spiritual Care position: click here
:: NYDIS to Roll Out “Disaster Tip Sheets for NYC Religious Leaders” – August 8

On August 8 NYDIS will roll out a much anticipated series of fifteen “Disaster Tip Sheets for NYC Religious Leaders.” Each one-page tip sheet provides basic orientation to mitigation education and provides important information and resources about disaster-related issues of key importance to clergy and religious leaders. Some of the titles included are: The Disaster Lifecycle, Emotional & Spiritual Care, How to Use Your Facility for Disaster Ministry, Disaster Volunteerism, Clergy Self-Care, Continuity of Ministry, and Backlash Mitigation. The Tip Sheets are a free resource for religious leaders and the congregations and the neighborhoods or faith communities they serve. They will be available to download from the NYDIS website – feel free to share them with others who will benefit from this useful information.

If you have any questions or suggestions, contact Autumn Brown, Coordinator, Community Outreach and Training:
:: NYC 9/11 Recovery Resources Online

A comprehensive list of news, updates and resources for 9/11 victims and injured recovery workers, updated weekly:
:: NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable Updates
On July 10, Dominique Atchison was named interim Moderator, NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable. For information and scheduling, please contact Dominique at:


  • NYC 9/11 In-Service Training for Case Workers
    In-Service Training is required for case workers who have never presented a case at the Roundtable, and is recommended as a refresher for experienced case workers who have previously presented cases. All training sessions take place at NYDIS (map).
    • Monday, August 27 - 1:00-3:30 pm
  • NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable Schedule
    The NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable brings together donors with agencies providing case management to 9/11 victims. Case Workers who would like to present a case must sign-up by Friday prior to the meeting of the Roundtable. Due to the influx of cases which need presenting, the 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable will be adding an additional Wednesday date each month. There will now be three meetings a month, instead of two.
    • Wednesday, July 25 - 9:30 am-12:00 noon
    • Thursday, August 2 - 9:30 am-12:00 noon
    • Wednesday, August 8 - 9:30 am-12:00 noon
    • Thursday, August 16 - 9:30 am-12:00 noon
    • Wednesday, August 22 - 9:30 am-12:00 noon
    • Thursday, August 30 - 9:30 am-12:00 noon
    • Thursday, September 6 - 9:30 am-12:00 noon
  • NYC 9/11 Case Management Coordination Meetings
    NYDIS hosts monthly Case Management Coordination meetings for service providers that are assisting 9/11 recovery workers and the general 9/11-affected community. These meetings are open to representatives from any service providers that wish to coordinate and share information about their services and the community's needs.
    • Wednesday, July 25 – 3:00-5:00 pm
    • Wednesday, August 15 - 9:30-11:00 am
    • Wednesday, September 19 - 9:30-11:00 am
:: NYC Katrina Evacuee Recovery Resources Online

A comprehensive list of news, updates and resources for Katrina evacuees in NYC, updated weekly:
:: Upstate NY 2006 Flood Resources

Download the Hudson Valley Region Disaster Assistance Guide for Upstate NY Floods: click here

For complete information on Flooding Assistance in NY and NJ, please go to the Flood Resources section of the NYDIS website:
:: NYS & NJ 2007 Nor’easter Recovery Resources:


Steam Blast Jolts Midtown, Killing One

A steam pipe explosion beneath a street near Grand Central Terminal propelled a giant scalding jet of brownish steam toward the sky, sending commuters who had been heading home stampeding to safety. Officials said that one person died and more than 30 were hurt, two critically. Though the blast initially raised fears of terrorism, officials were quick to dismiss that possibility. The explosion packed enough force to flip over a tow truck that ended up in the crater, which was about 35x40 feet. The cloud of steam and the hail of debris that followed lasted more than two hours and raised concerns about asbestos, which was used when the pipe was laid in the 1920’s.

Read the July 19 NY Times cover article by James Barron:
www.nytimes.com/2007/07/19/nyregion/19explode.html?_r=1&hp=&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin& adxnnlx=1184851017-W3AJXcMOuF3kFBYsxDDPPw

NYC’s Emergency Response to Steam Pipe Explosion

The City’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM) coordinated the inter-agency response to the steam pipe explosion that occurred on 41st Street and Lexington Avenue July 19 at 6:00 pm: no air samples tested positive for asbestos; the clean-up plan for debris and equipment that tested positive for asbestos began overnight; and individuals who live and work in this now “frozen zone” (between 40th and 43rd Streets and between Vanderbilt and Third Avenues) are not being permitted to enter the area during clean-up.

Read OEM’s July 19 Press Release:

Asbestos Results of Air & Ground Samples from Steam Pipe Explosion

Immediately after the explosion, NYC’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) began to test air and ground samples for possible asbestos contamination. Bulk sample testing has been completed. Air sample testing is ongoing throughout the cleanup operation. Of the 41 air samples collected by DEP to date, none tested positive for asbestos. Of the bulk samples collected by DEP to date, 30 tested positive for asbestos, with 28 of those 30 positive tests showing trace amounts. The remaining 49 bulk samples showed no asbestos.

Download Air Sample data:

Download Bulk Sample data:

City’s Guidelines on Health & Mental Health-Related Issues

To learn about the health risks that may arise from the steam pipe explosion, including mental and/or physical consequences, the City’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) has prepared guidelines and recommendations.

:: 9/11 Workers' Compensation Registration Deadline Extended One Year-Aug. 14, 2008

NYDISnetNYDIS urges 9/11 chaplains, recovery workers and volunteers to register now to protect their right to workers' compensation benefits. NYDIS and New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH) in collaboration with other agencies is mounting a media campaign to inform workers throughout the country about the necessity of registering by the deadline.

Read the DNN article by Heather Moyer, in which she interviewed Maggie Jarry, NYDIS Director, Disaster Recovery and Advocacy:

Download the brochure (pdf): English | Español

Call for registration guidelines: 866.WTC.2556
:: WTC Registry Report Shows Impact of 9/11 Health Crisis

Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney and Congressman Fossella released a report showing that people from all 50 states and the District of Columbia have enrolled in the WTC Health Registry, which will track changes in their physical and mental health over the next 20 years.

Read the entire report:
:: Reps. Maloney & Fossella on Admin’s Draft 9/11 Health Care Plan

Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney and Congressman Vito Fossella, co-chairs of the Congressional 9/11 Health Caucus, issued a statement on the Bush Administration’s draft plan to treat and monitor ailing 9/11 responders.  The Statement says: "This draft plan is an outline of what we will need to provide quality care for those injured on 9/11 or in the rescue and recovery operations that followed. The plan needs more work and must be expanded to include residents, area workers and school kids –but it is progress and needs support. This is the first time the government has tabulated the total number -currently more than 6,500- of 9/11 responders who are sick as a result of the attacks.  This is a staggering figure and one that is expected to grow.”

Download “The WTC Medical Monitoring and Treatment Program Draft: click here

Read Rep. Maloney’s July 18 Press Release:
:: Rep. Nadler on Administration's Draft 9/11 Health Plan

Congressman Jerrold Nadler July 18 issued a statement regarding a draft Administration plan to implement a " Strategic Plan for a Nationwide World Trade Center Health Care Program". In it he says, "The existence of a draft 9/11 health care proposal is an acknowledgement from the Bush Administration that there are, in fact, real and significant health consequences from the collapse of the WTC, and its content confirms that the affected population is growing as are the costs associated with the provision of care.” He continues, "However, the current iteration of the draft plan leaves many questions unanswered about the Administration's intentions regarding details of operational and funding approaches, and has at least one glaring shortfall: it fails to provide for the health care needs of residents, non-first responder workers and students.”

Read Rep. Nadler’s entire Statement:
:: Big Cost Increase Is Predicted to Treat Ground Zero Workers

New federal planning documents prepared by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) suggest that the money needed to treat ailing ground zero workers could soar to $20 million a month by the end of this year, up from about $6 million a month now, because the number of recovery workers getting sick is increasing, and their illnesses are becoming more severe. The new estimates, which have not been published, are based on monthly records of treatment provided by the Mount Sinai Medical Center and four other NY metro area clinics that have been treating ground zero workers. This week, the House of Representatives is expected to vote on putting $50 million for the treatment program at the consortium clinics into the 2008 budget; and the Senate is considering a slightly larger amount and wants to cover other groups, including residents, that were exposed to trade center dust.

Read Anthony DePalma’s July 18 NY Times article: click here
:: 9/11 Cleanup Workers Seek Health Payments

Workers who say that toxic dust from the WTC site has given them serious health problems filed a lawsuit July 17 against an insurance fund set up by Congress to insure the city and its contractors after 9/11. The lawsuit is seeking compensation from the fund, WTC Captive Insurance Company, on behalf of thousands of workers who became ill after working to clean up the site. Mayor Bloomberg said that the workers’ lawyers were incorrect about the purpose of the fund, that it could pay only workers who win judgments against the city.

Read the NY Times July 18 article:
:: National Intelligence Releases Report on Terrorist Threat to US

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence issued on July 17 its Unclassified Key Judgments of the National Intelligence Estimate, "The Terrorist Threat to the U.S. Homeland." According to their judgment, the US will face a “persistent and evolving” terrorist threat in the next three years, as “al-Qaeda will intensify its efforts to put operatives here. As a result,” they judge, “ that the US currently is in a heightened threat environment.”

Download the entire Terrorist Threat Judgment:
:: DHS 2007 Grants Total $1.7B

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced final Fiscal Year (FY) 2007 Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP) awards totaling $1.7 billion. The six urban areas at highest risk of a terrorist attack – NYC/Northern NJ, the National Capital Region, LA/Long Beach, the California Bay Area, Houston, and Chicago - received almost $411 million. Since 9/11, DHS has invested $23 billion in state and local government preparedness. “HSGP is an important DHS funding mechanism for building and sustaining preparedness capabilities across the nation,” said Secretary Michael Chertoff. NYC is allocated to receive $134,090,000.

Read the July 18 DHS Press Release:

Download the FY 2007 Homeland Security Grant Program Allocation Overview:
  • NY’s Security Grant Disappoints Officials

    The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced July 18 that NY will receive $134 million this year to prevent terrorism attacks or respond to them, despite calls for more money from NY officials. The grant is part of the department’s Urban Areas Security Initiative, which will divide about $747 million among 45 urban areas. After the amount of the grant was disclosed in a Newsday article this month, Senators Schumer and Clinton, Rep. Slaughter, Gov. Spitzer and the governor’s deputy secretary for public safety, Michael Balboni, met with DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff to request more money. Specifically, Mr. Schumer asked for at least $207.5 million, the amount awarded in 2005. Sen. Schumer said he would try to seek more funds for NY in the appropriations process.

    Read the July 18 NY Times article:
:: HHS Announces $896.7M for Public Health Preparedness/Emergency Response

Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Mike Leavitt July 17 announced that the department has provided another $896.7 million to the states, territories, and four metropolitan areas to improve and sustain their ability to respond to public health emergencies. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is coordinating the funding to be used for preparedness and response to all-hazards public health emergencies including terrorism, pandemic influenza, and other naturally-occurring public health emergencies.

Read the July 17 HHS Press Release:
:: DHS Announces Sponsorship of 4th Annual National Preparedness Month

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will sponsor the fourth annual National Preparedness Month this September and encourage Americans to prepare for emergencies in their homes, businesses and communities. This year’s effort has a growing coalition of more than 625 national, regional, state, and local organizations pledging support. For the first time, the month will focus on different areas of emergency preparedness:
  • September 1-8: Back-to-School
  • September 9-15: Business preparedness
  • September 16-22: Multicultural preparedness
  • September 23-30: Home and family preparedness, including pets, older Americans and individuals with disabilities and special needs
Watch for details in the coming issues of NYDISNET of NYDIS’ all-day 2007 Disaster Preparedness Summit for Religious Leaders that will be held in honor of National Preparedness Month on Tuesday, September 25 at NYU’s Kimmel Center in Manhattan. Please hold the date.

Read the Press Release:
:: The Road Home Program - Deadline to Apply July 31

Louisiana homeowners who owned and occupied their homes at the time of Katrina or Rita, and suffered damage as a result of one of the storms, may be eligible to receive assistance through The Road Home program, which represents the largest single housing recovery program in US history, affording eligible homeowners up to $150,000 in compensation for their losses to get back into their homes. Those who have not yet applied have until July 31 to file an application for assistance.

Read the Road Home Press Release about the Deadline:

Apply to The Road Home Program:
1.888.762.3252 (TTY: 1.800.566.4224)
:: Veterinary Foundation Offers Disaster Assistance

Sharon Granskog from the American Veterinary Medical Foundation (V-MAT), says that despite the massive devastation caused by Katrina, some good did come out of the storm. "It really opened some eyes and got people thinking, ‘What would I do with my pet if I had to leave my house suddenly,'" she said. "It doesn't even have to be a hurricane - you can be forced from your home if there's a fire or chemical spill nearby.” V-MAT is a national response team of approximately 60 veterinarians, technicians, pharmacists and support personnel that responds to natural or man-made disasters to support the local veterinary community in whatever way necessary. The organization can set up a full field hospital as well as provide medical care for pets, search-and-rescue dogs, livestock, wildlife and even zoo animals.


From Our Members & Partners

  • Sikh Coalition & Partners Address Backlash/Bias with Chancellor Joel Klein

    The Sikh Coalition and partner agency advocates met with NYC’s Department of Education Chancellor Joel Klein July 16 to discuss ways to make schools safe for Sikh (and other religiously observant) children. Klein expressed his concern about recent bias incidents in schools and pledged to work with the Sikh Coalition on an ongoing basis. This meeting was prompted by the Sikh Coalition’s recently released report, “Hatred in the Hallways” (see June 20 NYDISnet), that documents incidents of harassment against Sikh schoolchildren throughout the city. The Sikh Coalition has asked the Department of Education to implement a number of changes, including issuing a letter from the Chancellor to school principals asking them to pay close attention to incidents of bias-based harassment against Sikhs, ensuring that all school personnel know about the unique issues that Sikh students face on account of their appearance, and issuing a regulation that clearly sets out the Department’s anti-harassment policy. They also asked that students and parents be informed of how to report incidents of bias-based harassment to the Department of Education. Bias and violence against Sikhs has risen dramatically since 9/11 – Sikhs are often perceived as Muslim.

    Download the Sikh Coalition’s Report, “Hatred in the Hallways”: click here

    For more information, call Amardeep Singh, Executive Director:


  • NYC VOAD Mental Health Committee to Hear Chaplaincy Presentation

    The Disaster Mental Health & Chaplaincy Committee, a Planning Committee of NYC VOAD (NYC Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster) is offering a presentation entitled “Disaster Chaplaincy: A Collaborative Resource” on Thursday, September 20, 9:00-11:00 am. It will be led by Rev. Julie Taylor, CTR, Executive Director of Disaster Chaplaincy Services (DCS) at the State Office of Mental Health Regional Office, 330 Fifth Avenue, Manhattan.
  • Bishop Bouman's New Book on Finding Hope and Grace Post-9/11

    In Grace All Around Us: Embracing God’s Promise in Tragedy and Loss, Stephen Paul Bouman, a bishop in the Evangelical Lutheran Church, writes about how he has kept hope alive himself despite the devastation caused by either natural disaster or human evil. In Chapter One titled “Grace”, he writes, “This book is kind of a ‘diary of an urban bishop’.... It is a journal of awe and respect for the many people whose faith and compassion have left their mark on me.”

    To order a copy, call Fortress Press:

  • HAN Web System Alerts NYC’s Health Providers

    The NYC Health Alert Network (HAN), a web-based alerting system from the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH), provides doctors and other medical providers with up-to-date information on urgent and emergent public health issues.

    To register:

    Download the HAN PowerPoint presentation: click here

Preparedness Initiatives

  • About NYDISNET and NYDISNET Alerts

    Welcome to NYDISNET, our bi-weekly e-newsletter. We hope this resource will keep you updated about the work of NYDIS and developments in disaster readiness, response and recovery initiatives here in New York City. During emergencies we will send a NYDISNET ALERT to all subscribers. The alert will include all official information available through the NYC Office of Emergency Management and news from our members and partners. Please feel free to copy and distribute any information from NYDISNET that you find helpful. If you would like to distribute NYDISNET to your agency staff or faith community leaders please let us know - we're happy to provide that service free of charge.
  • Have You Registered with HOWCALM™?

    NYDISnet NYDIS has developed and made available, free to NYC faith communities and houses of worhship, a secure, web-based database system for managing faith-based assets in times of crisis. By tracking the logistics and resources of houses of worship, religious schools and faith-based service providers, the system enhancing the preparedness, response capacity and emergency planning efforts in NYC. Enrolling your congregation will include enrollment in emergency communication systems, disaster training opportunities and enhance NYDIS’ ability to work in partnership with OEM and Human Service agencies to include your house of worship in all-hazards planning.

    For more information download the brochure on pdf: click here

    To register your House of Worship: click here
  • OEM Contest: Be the Ready New Yorker of the Month & Win a Go Bag

    NYDISnetCalling all Ready New Yorkers! Are you prepared for an emergency? If so, OEM wants to hear your story. OEM invites New Yorkers to share stories of how they have prepared for emergencies through the Ready New Yorker of the Month contest. Each month, residents may submit their preparedness testimonials to OEM and the winner will be named the “Ready New Yorker of the Month” and receive two Go Bags, backpacks with basic supplies residents should have on hand for use in an emergency. Explain how you got through any type of emergency or how you plan to combat any disaster that comes your way. Inspire other New Yorkers to get prepared by sharing your story of preparedness on the OEM website.

    Learn more about the Contest:
  • Lightning Safety

    Summer is the peak season for one of the nation's deadliest weather phenomena— lightning. Safeguarding US residents from dangerous lightning is the goal of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Services website.

  • Con Ed Provides Storm Preparedness Measures

    In the event of a major storm or severe weather, Con Ed provides information and tips on its website for food and water, the use of dry ice, making a storm checklist and information on weather.

    Con Ed’s Storm Preparedness information:
  • Con Ed Urges Energy Conservation as Heat Wave Approaches – 100 Tips

    With temperatures expected to break the 90-degree mark in NYC, Con Edison is urging its customers to be conservation minded and to use energy wisely.

    For any service difficulties:

    For a list of 100 energy- and money-saving tips:
  • ARC-GNY Preparedness Presentation-Headquarters

    Prepare New York is a free 45-minute emergency preparedness presentation teaching NYC residents how to create a plan, build a supply kit, and keep loved ones safe and informed during times of disaster. Participants receive an interactive CD that can be used to create a customized evacuation plan and brochures from the ARC and NYC OEM. The next presentations are on Thursday, August 2 and Thursday, September 6, 6:30 to 7:15 pm at 520 West 49th Street.

    Sign up online for August 2:

    Sign up online for September 6:
  • ARC Tip: When the Lights Go Out

    Short-term power outages, such as those caused by storms, are inconveniences but with good planning, you will get through it just fine.  The Top Safety Tips for a Blackout are:

    1. Only use a flashlight for emergency lighting. Never use candles.
    2. Turn off electrical equipment in use when the power went out.
    3. Avoid opening the refrigerator and freezer.
    4. Do not run a generator inside a home or garage.
    5. If you use a generator, connect the equipment you want to power directly to the outlets on the generator. Do not connect a generator to a home's electrical system.
    6. Listen to local radio and television for updated information.

  • CDC 2007-08 Travel Health Book on Hazards

    The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released an updated version of "Health Information for International Travel," the “Yellow Book” is an authoritative guide to healthy international travel, with information on health risks from the ordinary to the extraordinary, such as avian flu and natural disasters. Additional new features include: recommendations on traveling to countries that have experienced limited, non-pandemic human avian influenza cases, updated immunization guidelines, and health risks and recommendations for humanitarian workers. The companion website lets travelers look up specific information by travel destination and view or print custom reports based on individual travel plans.

    Offered by health publisher Elsevier, the book is available at bookstores, online book sellers or by contacting Elsevier:

    Download the Yellow Book free:
  • Pandemic Flu Preparedness

    • Flu Preparedness Guide for Faith Communities
      Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) has developed several audience specific brochures that will help guide you and your organization through the pandemic planning process. One that is of particular interest to the NYDISnet readership is entitled, “It’s Not Flu As Usual: What Faith Based and Community Organizations Need to Know about Pandemic Flu.”

      Download the Booklet:

    • Course: Pandemic Flu Preparedness for Faith-Based Organizations
      The Extension Disaster Education Network’s (EDEN) "Pandemic Influenza Preparedness for Faith-Based Organizations" course, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), enables congregations, synagogues, mosques and other places of worship to protect the health of their staff and their communities; and fulfill their mission during an influenza pandemic. Participants will learn about infection control measures to use before and during a pandemic; and how to write a basic preparedness and response plan to maintain the critical functions of the organization.

      To find out more about the course, contact Abigail Borron:

      To learn about EDEN membership:

    • CDC Releases Latest Pandemic Planning Update
      The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Mike Leavitt July 18 released the “ HHS Pandemic Planning Update IV”, which provides a review of the current status of the Department's pandemic influenza planning efforts in five key areas: monitoring and surveillance, vaccines, antiviral medications, state and local preparedness, and communications. This fourth update covers such topics as community mitigation guidance; progress on antiviral stockpiling; advances in vaccine research, development and stockpiling; the Pandemic Flu Leadership Forum and blog; and the "Know What To Do About Pandemic Flu" public service announcements.

      Read the full Update:

    • Implementation of the National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza
      On July 17 the White House Homeland Security Council issued “National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza: Implementation Plan One Year Summary,” a one-year report on the Administration's progress in implementing it pandemic preparedness and response goals of stopping, slowing or limiting its spread to the US; limiting the domestic spread and mitigating disease; and sustaining infrastructure and mitigating impact to the economy and the functioning of society. It concludes that, “While we have made progress over the past year to prepare the Nation for the threat of an influenza pandemic, much important work lies ahead. Critical gaps in pandemic preparedness efforts remain…the potential consequences of a severe pandemic demand that we redouble our efforts to address critical gaps.”

      Download the Report:

    • HHS Establishes Public Health Advisory Board
      Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Mike Leavitt announced the establishment of a public health advisory panel concerned with chemical, biological, nuclear or radiological agents. The National Biodefense Science Board, authorized by the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act, will give the Secretary guidance on preventing, preparing for, and responding to release of such agents, whether they are naturally occurring, accidental, or deliberate. Board members are yet to be selected. There will be 13 members, appointed by the Secretary, from among leading experts in science, public health and medicine.

      To submit a resume for consideration to be a board member:

      For further information contact Dr. Susan Cibulsky:

      The board’s charter and additional information:

    • Pets Belong in Pandemic Flu Preparedness Equation
      The Department of Health and Human Service’s (HHS) Pandemic Flu Leadership Blog includes an entry posted by Greg Dworkin, Founding Editor, Flu Wiki & Flu Wiki Forum; Chief of Pediatric Pulmonology and Medical Director of the Pediatric Inpatient Unit, Danbury Hospital. That there’s going to be a need for food and addressing of ‘other problems’ should a category 5 pandemic break out, planning needs to be extensive and done in advance. A “pet planner” addition “may be the necessary tool for more than a few to take this issue seriously and it’s a good way to bring veterinarians to the table, and add another professional society to the mix. Right now, whether it’s, CDC, HHS, the states or the professional societies, we need information out there for the public from every credible source we can get. Many voices, one message: panflu prep is necessary, important and possible. After all, your pets and your children expect and deserve nothing less.”


    • Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act – July 26
      Download the ADA Guide for Local Governments: Making Community Emergency Preparedness and Response Programs Accessible to People with Disabilities:

  • Preparedness Guide for the Underserved

    Operation HOPE, a national organization focused on bringing financial literacy and empowerment to underserved US communities offers the ”Personal Disaster Preparedness Guide,” under its HOPE Coalition America program, which serves as a resource network of companies, including banking, financial services, and insurance as well as government, social service and emergency relief organizations that mobilize to respond to disasters.

    Download the Personal Disaster Preparedness Guide:

We Recommend

  • Add Your Info to www.NYDIS.org Resource Library

    Do you have a useful resource for caseworkers, recovery providers and clients that you would like to submit? The NYDIS Resource Library on our website contains a large compilation of disaster resources including downloadable documents, links to useful websites, and references to printed publications. We welcome your agency's resources, which can be posted on NYDIS.org by clicking on the "Resources" Tab. You will then find directions on how to "Submit a Resource".

  • FEMA’s New Guide Asks: “Are You Ready?”

    The FEMA publication “Are You Ready?” is a 200-page guide that can be used as a reference or as a step-by-step manual on how to learn about local emergency plans, identify local hazards, develop an emergency communication plan, and build a disaster supplies kit. Other topics include evacuating safely, making use of emergency public shelters and protecting people with disabilities.

    Download the new “Are You Ready Guide?”:
  • Updated Emergency Resources for At-Risk Populations

    The new version of the workbook, "Locating and Reaching At-Risk Populations in an Emergency," first released last fall, is just out. At-risk populations include those who are physically or mentally disabled (blind, deaf, hard-of-hearing, cognitive disorders, or with mobility limitations), people with limited English language skills, geographically or culturally isolated people, homeless people, elderly individuals, and children. This workbook from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Coordinating Office for Terrorism Preparedness and Emergency Response (COTPER) provides resources and information for effective planning for emergency preparedness and response.

    Resource Guide 2007: click here

    Workbook Manual 2007: click here

    Inserts Manual 2007: click here

    For further information, contact Mary Burt, NYS Department of Health:
  • New Quarterly: Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness

    The American Medical Association has introduced its new publication, a peer-reviewed journal emphasizing public health preparedness and disaster response for all health care professionals.

    Download the July 2007 Issue:
  • “Light our Way: A Guide for Spiritual Care in Times of Disaster”

    This resource by National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters (NVOAD) informs disaster response volunteers, first responders and disaster planners in the areas of emotional and spiritual care giving.

    Download “Light Our Way”:
  • WTC Tribute Center: Children Respond to 9/11

    The Tribute WTC Visitors Center hosts a new exhibition, “Coming Together: Our Children Respond to 9/11 with Hope for the Future”, from July 18 through January 18, 2008. Produced in collaboration with the NYU Child Study Center, the exhibit features paintings, collages and multimedia created between 2001 and 2006 by children in NY, NJ and PA. No fee.

  • PlainViews: E-Newsletter for Spiritual Care Providers

    Subscribe to this bi-monthly e-newsletter offering views on Professional Practice, Advocacy, Education & Research, and Spiritual Development. Sponsored by the HealthCare Chaplaincy in NYC and edited by NYDIS Board President The Rev. Dr. Martha Jacobs.

    Send your email address to:


Save The Date

  • Extreme Events II: Community Conversation on Preparedness

    August 6
    8:30 am-4:30 pm
    Albany, NY

    “Community Conversation on Preparedness: What About Us?,” presented by the University at Albany School of Public Health, will discuss the importance of having a strong local community based preparedness system. The goal is to assist leaders to determine the degree of preparedness within their communities. The Keynote Speaker will be Dr. Georges Benjamin, Executive Director, American Public Health Association. There is no charge for this program.

    For details about the conference:

    To register:

    Call Greg Giambrone:
  • US Disaster Preparedness Conference

    Tuesday, August 21-Wednesday, August 22
    New Orleans, LA

    Presentations, interactive panel discussions, tradeshow exhibits and networking events with the nation ’s top experts combined with classroom-style training will arm participants with disaster planning and response best practices. Recent changes in the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the National Response Plan, and the National Incident Management System (NIMS) will be detailed.

    For conference and registration details:
  • 6th Commemoration of 9/11 Moved to New Location

    Due to the ongoing redevelopment at the WTC site, this year's 9/11 observance will take place at Zuccotti Park, which is adjacent to the WTC site at Liberty Street between Broadway and Church Street/Trinity Place. This year, responders to the attack will deliver the reading of the names of the victims during the ceremony.

    Read the Letter from Governor Spitzer and Mayor Bloomberg to Families: click here

    • 9/11 Ceremony Location Change Upsets Families
      Some families of September 11 victims are upset that officials have moved this year's anniversary events from the WTC site to Zuccotti Park. A letter sent from eleven family groups stated, "For us, and many Americans around the nation, the WTC site is sacred ground" and questioned whether the park would even hold the thousands of mourners.

      Read the July 21 Gothamist article:
  • NYU’s Emergency & Disaster Management Symposium

    Wednesday, September 19
    10:00 am - 4:30 pm

    The third annual Emergency & Disaster Management Symposium titled “The World Is Our Classroom,” features four major topics: “The Role of Hospitals During a Public Health Emergency” by Keynote Speaker, Dr. Georges C. Benjamin, Executive Director, American Public Health Association; “The Health Response to the London Bombings of July 2005” and “How Do You Spell Polonium? The Public Health Response to a Novel Assassination Weapon?” by Penny Bevan, Director of Emergency Response, London Department of Health; “Prepared for Anything? Theory vs. Reality” by Louise Boden, Chief Nurse, University College London Hospital; and “Emergency Management in Kenya” by George Contreras, Director of Emergency Management, NYU Hospitals Center and David Violante, EMS Coordinator, Society for Hospital and Resources Exchange. This free event is held at NYU Medical Center, 401 East 30th Street.

    Pre-registration is necessary. Contact Jamiyla Stroud-Garrett:

    Download the Poster: click here
  • NYDIS’ 4th Annual Disaster Preparedness Summit for NYC Religious Leaders

    Tuesday, September 25
    8:30 am - 4:30 pm
    NYU Kimmel Center, Manhattan

    All-day event will be held in honor of National Preparedness Month. Please hold the date.
  • NEMA 2007 Annual Conference

    Friday, September 28– Tuesday, October 2
    Oklahoma City, OK

    The Annual Conference will take place at the Cox Convention Center. Conference agenda and registration details to follow.

    Sponsor and Exhibitor information is available now:

    For more information on conference sponsorship or exhibits, call Karen Cobuluis:

Job & Volunteer Opportunities

  • NYDIS, Coordinator, Disaster Chaplaincy & Spiritual Care

    NYDIS is seeking NYDIS is seeking a full-time Coordinator of Disaster Chaplaincy & Spiritual Care (CSC) to oversee all aspects of curriculum-related, programmatic, and operational development of NYDIS’ new volunteer chaplain and spiritual care worker program. The Coordinator will manage the training, credentialing, and local deployment of all CSC volunteers from NYDIS member agencies and will coordinate this program in collaboration with parallel NGOs or government mental health agencies. The Coordinator should be ordained or a recognized spiritual leader in accordance with one’s faith community’s practices, a Board Certified Chaplain, have experience as a hospital, military, or uniformed services chaplain, and have a Masters of Divinity and/or other terminal religious degree. Experience managing or training chaplains is required.

    For details about the position and how to apply: click here
  • NYDIS, Moderator, NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable

    NYDIS and the NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable Advisory Committee are seeking a Moderator to provide daily program administration of the NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable. Responsibilities include scheduling case worker presentations for weekly Roundtable sessions, moderating application sessions between donors and case workers, providing guidance to 9/11 case workers, and other duties. Graduate degree in social work or equivalent professional experience preferred. Deadline to apply is August 1.

    For details about the position and how to apply: click here
  • NYDIS, VISTA Positions

    NYDIS is seeking candidates for the following VISTA positions:

    VISTA Leader – Disaster Preparedness & Recovery Program
    To download the Position Profile click here

    VISTA Member – Preparedness Outreach & Marketing
    To download the Position Profile click here
  • NYDIS, Office Volunteers

    NYDIS is seeking office volunteers to support the finance and disaster preparedness/training departments, and to answer phones and perform administrative duties for 20 hours per week. Positions begin immediately.

    To apply, please email your Cover Letter and Resume to:
    pgudaitis@nydis.org or fax to 212.669.6101.
  • Catholic Charities of NY, Disaster Preparedness Coordinator

    The Disaster Preparedness Coordinator will be part of the Staff Management Group team and will participate in researching, writing and evaluating Catholic Charities Community Services (CCCS) and Catholic Charities New York (CCNY) disaster plans. Responsibilities also include ensuring continuity with the response plans of NYC and Lower Hudson Valley Counties, supporting the Human Services Council (HSC) planning process, and act as the liaison between HSC, CCCS and CCNY regarding preparedness activities and disaster services planning activities.

    For details about this position: click here

    To apply, submit resume to:
    Joy Jasper, Human Resources
    Catholic Charities Community Services
    1011 1st Avenue
    NY, NY 10022
    Attn: Disaster Preparedness Coordinator
  • NYC DOHMH, MRC Program Associate, Emergency Management Div.

    The NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) is looking for an individual with experience and skills that can be leveraged to recruit, train and retain volunteer health professionals for its growing Bureau of Emergency Management. The candidate for a Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) Program Associate in Manhattan should have strong interpersonal and communication skills, familiarity with marketing, training, volunteer management, event coordination, and/or related activities, and an interest in working in Public Health Preparedness.

    Submit your resume online:

    For details about the position: click here
  • NYC OEM, Job Opportunities

    For all of the positions currently available at the NYC Office of Emergency Management (OEM), including emergency management personnel, responders, planners, and administrative and support staff, please go directly to the OEM “Job Opportunities” website page:

Make a Gift to NYDIS
  • Support NYDIS - Donate Online

    NYDISnetIf you'd like to make a donation to assist NYDIS in its mission of providing faith-based disaster services, click here, or send a check to NYDIS at 22 Cortlandt Street, 20th Fl., New York, NY 10007. NYDIS is a 501(c)(3) corporation and contributions are 100% tax deductible. It is a great way to honor or memorialize someone and we will send an acknowledgement of your gift.

    To donate online, go to the NYDIS homepage and click "Make a Donation":


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