NYDISnet for February 14, 2007

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.

When an emergency situation arises in New York City - our office will send out 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.

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Faithfully, Peter

Executive Director & CEO
If you have some news to share or an upcoming event to publicize please contact yperry@nydis.org
20th FLOOR
NEW YORK, NY 10007

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  NYDIS Attends Mayor's Briefing on 9/11 Health Report

On February 13, NYDIS staff attended a briefing at City Hall where the Mayor's Office presented a preview of the first comprehensive report on the long-term health impacts of the 9/11 disaster, "Addressing the Health Impacts of 9-11: Report and Recommendations to Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg," which was released later that day. NYDIS staff were interviewed and provided documentation for the task force’s assessment. This report should be seen as a sound starting point for developing a comprehensive health monitoring and treatment program. NYDIS also strongly believes that victim compensation and treatment will not meet the needs of all workers. We encourage the City to incorporate funding for long-term case management and referral services as well as cash assistance to support injured recovery workers and their families in achieving sustainable recovery.

The Mayor's afternoon Press Conference:
Video | Press Release

Read the full report (pdf):
  NYDIS Approved by CNCS as VISTA Sponsor Site

NYDIS was recently approved as a new VISTA Sponsor Site by the National Corporation for Community Service - 2007 will be the first of a 3-year VISTA Program called, "Capacity Building for Faith-Based Disaster Preparedness & Recovery." Last Spring NYDIS developed the program in collaboration with member/partner agencies - the program will use VISTA members to build the preparedness and recovery capacity of the service sites in their work with low-income and immigrant communities. NYDIS and the program partners are currently recruiting 1 VISTA Leader and 13 VISTA Member positions, 5 members will serve at NYDIS and 8 will serve at these "sub-site" organizations: The Muslim Consultative Network, National Disaster Interfaiths Network, the NYC Office of Emergency Management, The Sikh Coalition, and September Space/World Cares Center. NYDIS' VISTA Supervisor, Daniel Wilson, has begun to coordinate the VISTA recruitment process and posting ads. All VISTA recruits for this program will begin their term of national service in April.

For details on these open positions, please go to the "Jobs & Volunteer Opportunities" section in this issue.

Learn more about applying to VISTA:
  NYDIS Welcomes 3 New Staff

NYDIS is pleased to welcome three new members to the staff. On February 6, Minister Dominique Atchison joined NYDIS as the Moderator of the NYC Katrina Unmet Needs Roundtable. She is also on the staff of Judson Memorial Church and a volunteer with the Salvation Army of Greater NY. Daniel Wilson, who started as Interim Development Assistant at NYDIS, became the Development Assistant & VISTA Supervisor on February 1, after attending VISTA Supervisors Training & Orientation in Wilmington, DE in January. Dan graduated from Bowdoin College in May 2005 and came to NYDIS from Grunewald Consulting. Matthew Ziemer has joined the staff as Recovery Coordinator, managing NYDIS' implementation of the Coordinated Assistance Network for injured recovery workers. Matthew is currently pursuing a Masters in Public Administration in Emergency Management from Metropolitan College.

Dominique Atchison can be reached at:

Daniel Wilson can be reached at:

Matthew Ziemer can be reached at:
  NYDIS Launches 9/11 Recovery Worker CAN

NYDIS is working with national and local partners to use the technology and tools of the Coordinated Assistance Network (CAN) for the newly expanded coordination of services for injured WTC recovery workers. This expanded coordination initiative is funded by a grant from the American Red Cross Liberty Fund. Matt Ziemer, NYDIS' Recovery Coordinator, recently participated in a CAN "Train the Trainer" workshop in Dallas, TX, where he met with representatives from CAN as well as Case Managers from CAN participant agencies from around the country, and received training on the implementation of this new NYC system.

CAN is based on the 9/11 USG Datamart and was created by national relief agencies in partnership with National VOAD to enable service providers to share information locally or nationally, so that clients may easily receive the assistance they need. The NYDIS coordinated use of the CAN system for the injured 9/11 recovery workers will be independent from the national system and new use of its secure tools on a local level in NYC.

To learn more about this service, contact Matthew Ziemer:
  NYDIS Promotes 9/11 Worker's Comp Registration

NYDIS is joining the NY Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH) in collaboration with the NYS AFL-CIO, WTC Medical Monitoring Program, the Laborers' Health and Safety Trust Fund, the Business and Labor Coalition of New York, workers' compensation law firms, the UCC-National Disaster Ministries, and Wall Street Rising, is mounting a media campaign to inform workers throughout the country about the necessity of registering for workers' compensation. Joel Shufro, NYCOSH Executive Director, said, "We know that tens of thousands of people are at risk of becoming ill as a result of their exposure toxic air and to psychological trauma while doing rescue, recovery or cleanup work after 9/11. We want to ensure that every one of them registers with the Workers' Compensation Board before the August 14, 2007, deadline. And if they don't know about the program, they won't register, it's that simple."

For guidelines for registering, in English and Spanish, and all the necessary forms:

Download the brochure (pdf):

  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

  • Online 9/11 Client Inquiry Form
    To access the form, go to:

  • 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, March 5 - 1:00-3:30 pm
    • Monday, April 2 - 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.
    • Thursday, February 15 - 9:30-12:00 noon
    • Wednesday, February 21 - 9:30-12:00 noon
    • Thursday, March 1 - 9:30-12:00 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, February 14 - 9:30-11:00 am
      • Wednesday, March 14 - 9:30-11:00 am
      • Wednesday, April 18 - 9:30-11:00 am

    • To sign up for In-Service Training, present a case, or RSVP for Case Management Coordination Meetings:
      Maggie Jarry, Director of Recovery & Advocacy
      NYC Katrina Evacuee Resources Online

    A comprehensive list of news, updates and resources for Katrina evacuees in NYC, updated weekly:
      NYC Katrina Unmet Needs Roundtable

    • NYC Katrina In-Service Training for Case Workers
      Case managers working with Katrina or Rita survivors are required to attend an in-service training prior to presenting at the Roundtable. The purpose of these trainings is to provide case managers with a better understanding of the workings of the Roundtable and to help increase the likelihood that a client's needs could be funded.

    • NYC Katrina Unmet Needs Roundtable
      The NYC Katrina Unmet Needs Roundtable aids case managers in securing cash assistance and to share resources to best meet the unmet needs of disaster victims so that they may regain self-sufficiency and recover from the impact of a disaster. The Roundtable helps to facilitate long-term recovery by supporting clients' recovery plans. Case managers who would like to present at the NYC Katrina Unmet Needs Roundtable may submit a request the Friday prior to the Roundtable meeting.
      • Tuesday, March 13, 2:00-5:00 pm
      • Tuesday, March 20, 2:00-5:00 pm

    • To sign up for In-Service Training or to present a case:
      Dominique Atchison, Moderator


      NYS Disaster Declared in Oswego County

    Governor Eliot Spitzer February 8 declared a State Disaster Emergency for Oswego County and contiguous areas that have been battered by recent lake-effect snows, which deposited over 77 inches of snow, causing disruptions to vital public transportation, public health and public safety systems. The Governor directed the implementation of the State Disaster Preparedness Plan and authorized all State agencies to take appropriate action to assist affected local governments and individuals in responding to and recovering from these storms.

    Read the Governor's Press Release (pdf):
    • Oswego Deluged By Snow

      Oswego County on the southeastern rim of Lake Ontario, received 5 to 10 feet of snow over eight days. In one town, Redfield, the National Weather Service reported an unofficial total of 11 feet 8 inches, which would be a state record for snowfall from a single storm event. The Weather Service said more snow was on the way.

      Read the NY Times February 12 article:
      OEM Opened Warming Centers

    Due to extremely low regional temperatures, on Tuesday, February 6 the City opened nine warming centers throughout NYC, located in areas with the highest concentrations of heat loss complaints as indicated by 311 calls. The Warming Centers were open until Saturday, February 10.

    For more information:
    Call 311
      Mt. Sinai: Surge in New 9/11 Worker Registrations

    The number of patients enrolled at Mount Sinai's WTC health clinic skyrocketed 50% last month following the publicity surrounding the death of retired police officer Cesar Borja. More than 600 additional patients, mostly 9/11 rescue workers, registered in the medical-monitoring program in January claiming they've become ill from breathing toxic air and dust at Ground Zero. In the prior two months, about 400 new patients applied for monitoring. Borja's death of lung disease, believed to be linked to Ground Zero exposure over three months, "increased awareness" about 9/11 health concerns and spurred a new wave of patients, said a Mount Sinai spokesman.

    Read the February 8 NY Post article:
    • NYU Center Will Also Treat 9/11 Responders

      The NYU School of Medicine has teamed up with Bellevue Hospital to open a health center in response to the rise in 9/11-related illnesses. The WTC Environmental Health Center will provide screenings, evaluations and treatments for potential medical and mental health patients, including those who may be uninsured or undocumented, said Alan Aviles, president of Health and Hospitals Corp., which runs the project. It plans to offer most of its services for free.

      Read the February 8 Washington Square News article:
      Sign-Up Now – WTC Medical Exams for Responders

    The WTC Medical Monitoring Program offers free, complete medical examinations. To date, 30,000 responders have been screened under the Program, which is open to responders in NY and across the country who served at Ground Zero. Eligible responders who have not yet been screened are urged to enroll in the program. What doctors learn from monitoring the health of thousands of these workers will help future disaster relief workers.

    Contact for an exam:
    1.888.702.0630 from 9:00 am-5:00 pm

    Download the Brochure (pdf):
      DOHMH Urges Completion of WTC Health Follow-Up Survey

    More than 13,000 enrollees in the WTC Health Registry completed the follow-up survey about their physical and mental health after 9/11. The NYC Health Department (DOHMH) urges all remaining enrollees to complete the re-survey as this is the first opportunity for enrollees to inform the Registry about their physical and mental health since 2004. Data collection will continue for the next several months, and findings will be released to the public. The results should help health experts recognize and treat conditions potentially associated with exposure to 9/11 and its aftermath.

    Download the DOHMH Report, "City Health Information: Clinical Guidelines for Adults Exposed to the WTC Disaster" (pdf):
      FDNY WTC Program Provides Free Medications

    The FDNY WTC Medical Monitoring and Treatment Program has announced a new program to provide eligible FDNY rescue workers (Fire & EMS; active & retired) with free WTC medications. Approved medications will involve no member co-pay. The FDNY-WTC-MMTP evaluates and treats FDNY members, active and retired, who were involved in WTC recovery work. Funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and The Sept 11th Recovery Grant from the American Red Cross Liberty Disaster Relief Fund.

    For more information on the Program:
      Register: EPA Lower Manhattan Test & Clean Program

    Registration began for the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Lower Manhattan Test and Clean Program, announced in December. Residents and building owners in Lower Manhattan can register to have the air and dust in their units tested for four contaminants associated with dust from the collapse of the WTC. The program will cover all areas south of Canal and west of Pike and Allen Streets. Priority for testing will be based on a property's proximity to the WTC site. Live operators will be available 9:00 am to 9:00 pm Monday through Friday, 10:00 am to 6:00 pm on Saturday, and 2:00 pm to 9:00 pm on Sunday.

    To register call:

      NY Lawmakers Secure $25M for Ill 9/11 Workers

    Lobbying efforts by NY's congressional leadership including Sen. Clinton, Rep. Fossella, Rep. Maloney, Rep. Nadler, and Sen. Schumer have convinced the White House to spend an additional $25 million in 2007 for the care and treatment of 9/11 rescue workers who became ill after exposure to the toxic dust at WTC. Their efforts obtained $75 million last year, but that money is running out, and Sen. Clinton is seeking a $1.9 billion program to help the workers. NYDIS strongly supports these efforts.

    Read the NY Times January 31 article:
      New Congressional Resolution for Federal 9/11 Health Plan

    Under a proposed resolution, Congress would officially urge the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to develop a federal plan to handle the growing 9/11 health crisis. The resolution (H. Res. 128), introduced by Reps. Maloney and Fossella, along with 11 colleagues, calls for a plan to cover everyone exposed to the toxic air around Ground Zero , including responders, volunteers and area residents, workers and students. Until now, the federal government has not put forth a long-term, comprehensive plan to assist all of those made sick from the Ground Zero air. HHS has no official directive to address the issue and no proposal or medical monitoring program encompassing everyone exposed to the toxins.

    See the Resolution (pdf):

    Read Rep. Fossella's Press Release:
      NY is Test Site to Guard Against Nuclear Terror

    NYC is about to become a laboratory to test ways of strengthening the nation's defenses against a terror attack by a nuclear device or a radioactive "dirty bomb". Starting this spring, the Administration will assess new detection machines at a Staten Island port terminal that are designed to screen cargo and automatically distinguish between naturally occurring radiation and critical bomb-building ingredients. And later this year, the federal government plans to begin setting up a network of radiation alarms at some bridges, tunnels, roadways and waterways into NY. The Domestic Nuclear Detection Office is the Homeland Security agency coordinating the work. "Whether or not it works, whether or not it causes too many false alarms, which causes a whole other set of problems, all of these things are still to be determined," said NYC Police Commissioner Ray Kelly.

    Read the February 8 NY Times article:

    Learn more about the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office:
      WTC Steel Beams Found

    On January 31, large steel columns from the WTC were found beneath a service road during an ongoing search for human remains. The surprising discovery raises more questions about what other artifacts and human remains are located at Ground Zero - and how carefully the service road was created in the first place. Digging was halted in the immediate area until the Port Authority removes these beams and puts them into the storage hangar at JFK Airport.

    Read the February 1 Newsday article:
      Freedom Tower Attracts Interest from Private Funds

    The Port Authority of NY/NJ, the owner of the WTC, has begun discussions to shop the Freedom Tower, hoping to lure private equity or hedge funds into owning all or part the $3 billion skyscraper. Separately, the agency is in talks to sell development rights to one of the five planned skyscrapers there to J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. Taken together, the interest by private-sector money in the site would represent a major advance for the development, which has thus far relied almost completely on government support and insurance proceeds.

    Read the February 12 WSJ article (subscription required):
      DHS: 8% Increase for Homeland Security FY08

    President Bush's FY 2008 budget request for DHS represents $46.4 billion in funding, which is an increase of 8% over the FY 2007 level - excluding funds provided in emergency supplemental funding. The request includes providing $2 billion in grants for first responder preparedness—on top of $1 billion in interoperable communications grants previously authorized—and over $5 billion in funds that State, local, and tribal governments are currently spending; and strengthening FEMA by improving partnerships with States and professionalizing the national emergency management system.

    Read the DHS Fact Sheet:
    • DHS Secretary's Remarks on DHS FY08 Budget

      In his remarks at the February 5 Press Conference, DHS Secretary Chertoff said, "The funds that are provided through these programs will support resources available to other federal assistance programs that center on first responder, terrorism preparedness activities, and will deliver ample support to all State and local first responder organizations to equip and train to be prepared to protect the public in the case or in the event of a terrorist attack."

      Read Secretary Chertoff's entire remarks:

    • Chertoff Addresses Congress on Preparedness

      On February 8, Secretary Chertoff testified before the Subcommittee of the 110th Congress and highlighted key accomplishments of the last year and presented the DHS FY 2008 budget. In order to successfully build systems to protect our homeland, he noted that over the next two-year period there were five goals. Foremost of which is to "Build a Nimble, Effective Emergency Response System and a Culture of Preparedness".

      Read the section on Goal 4:
      President Issues Medical Emergency Directive

    President Bush issued orders February 7 for how federal medical personnel should respond to a nuclear, radiological, biological or chemical attack, saying authorities should focus on threats that can be dealt with medically. The directive says it is not feasible to stockpile medicine and equipment against every possible threat. However, the priority must be on threats with a potential for a catastrophic impact on public health that have the greatest potential to be handled medically. DHS spokesman Russ Knocke called the directive a playbook for how the federal government will respond and coordinate in providing medical treatment in case prevention fails.

    Read the article:
      RAND Study: Designing Systems to Guard Against Terrorism

    When designing systems to protect people and places against terrorist attacks, government officials should take into account that terrorists actively seek and find ways around defensive measures deployed against them, according to a RAND Corporation study issued February 7. "Breaching the Fortress Wall: Understanding Terrorist Efforts to Overcome Defensive Technologies" examines defensive technologies – the systems and approaches used to protect an area and people in it from terrorism - along with the methods terrorist groups have historically used to thwart attempts to discover and frustrate their efforts.

    Download the report (pdf):

From Our Members and Partners

  • FL Agencies Band Together Post-Tornado

    Interfaith Partners Offer Aid

    Responders to Florida's February 1 powerful F2 and F3 tornadoes, such as FLVOAD members, urge the public to provide the most helpful donations: money or building materials. Volusia County lost 200 homes, with another few hundred suffering various levels of damage. Lake County saw 200 homes destroyed and another 100 with major damage. Sumter County had 68 destroyed and 250 with major damage. Church World Service is partnering with Catholic Charities, requesting funds for Florida Interfaith Networking in Disaster, LASER, and Volusia Interfaith Interagency Networking in Disaster (VIND), and offered training to long-term recovery committees. Lutheran Services Florida is distributing hygiene kits and blankets, the United Church of Christ has volunteer teams on stand-by, Church of the Brethren has Disaster Child Care volunteers at the ready, and the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee has offered its needs assessment skills. FLVOAD members and government officials urge unaffiliated volunteers to call these responding agencies before showing up or running donation drives.

    Make donations to:
    Church World Service
    28606 Phillips Street, P.O. Box 968, Elkhart, IN 46515

    Read the February 6 DNN article:
  • ARC Offers Mental Health Aid to All Katrina Evacuees

    The Access to Care program is an initiative of The American Red Cross' (ARC) Hurricane Recovery Program and is administered by Link2Health, a non-profit subsidiary of the Mental Health Association of NYC. Coverage is retroactive to August 30, 2005 and will cover services received on or prior to April 1, 2008 for those who lived in a pre-disaster area designated by FEMA for individual assistance following Katrina, Rita or Wilma and suffered significant impact.

    Enroll before October 1, 2007:
  • ARC-GNY Preparedness Presentation-Manhattan

    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 presentation is on Thursday, March 1, 6:30 to 7:30 pm at 520 West 49th Street.

    Sign up online:
  • ARC-GNY Preparedness Presentation-Chinese

    The next presentation of "Prepare NY in Chinese" is on Monday, March 5, 9:00 to 10:00 am at the CCBA at 62 Mott St. in Manhattan.

    Sign up online:
  • ARC-GNY Gets New Emergency Response Hummer

    ARC-GNY has added a second all-terrain vehicle to its fleet of emergency response vehicles. Donated by the GM Foundation, the multi-use H1 HUMMER further expands the Chapter's ability to provide disaster assistance to New Yorkers, especially during severe weather and over rough terrain. Although the H1 will be available to the Chapter wherever it is needed, it will be stationed at the Putnam/West Point Area Office, and easily accessible for operations in Orange, Putnam, Rockland and Sullivan counties.

    Read the January 23 Press Release:
  • Citizen Corps Celebrates its Fifth Anniversary

    At the end of January, President Bush acknowledged the fifth anniversary of the USA Freedom Corps program, which includes Citizen Corps. The NYC Citizen Corps Council encourages voluntary citizen involvement to enable individuals citywide to prepare for, respond to, and recover from disasters.

    Read the President's Proclamation:
  • Ground Zero Family Room to Relocate

    The Family Viewing Room located inside Gate 7 at Ground Zero (Liberty and Washington Streets) will be moved to a new location, due to excavation and construction, the Port Authority of NY/NJ announced. This special place where relatives of 9/11 victims have gathered privately and left mementos since 2002 will be closed on February 27. Plans call for a new trailer to be installed above the PATH Station on Church Street. Personal items left in the Viewing Room will be moved to the trailer by family members and redisplayed at the new location, which will be available on March 5. Enter at Gate 10 just to the south of the WTC PATH entrance on Church Street. The new hours will be 10:00 am to 8:00 pm. The new site will provide family members with a private space where they can pay their respects to their loved ones. The Family Room on the 20th floor at 1 Liberty Plaza will remain open.

    Read the February 6 Port Authority announcement (pdf):
  • WTC Memorial Will Go On National Tour

    On February 1 the WTC Memorial Foundation announced that it will launch a national outreach tour later this year to raise awareness about building the Memorial, create a broad base of regional support and raise funds for the project. The tour will center on a multi-city interactive exhibition, featuring actual steel beams which will be used to construct the Memorial and Museum.

    Read the Press Release (pdf):
  • LMDC Issues Report: Five Years of Accomplishments

    Five years after 9/11, Lower Manhattan continues its dramatic revival. Led by Governor Pataki and Mayor Bloomberg, and informed by public opinion, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation (LMDC) has facilitated this resurgence by developing and implementing a multifaceted plan to ensure its transformation into a central business district. Through a public process that included more than 200 LMDC-sponsored public meetings, LMDC has identified and addressed the needs of the community by developing projects that ensure the area's renaissance.

    Download the Report (pdf):
  • WCC Presents Concluding CURE Workshops

    World Cares Center (WCC) and Center for the Study of Trauma and Resilience (CSTR) at Columbia University are concluding their final Columbia University Resilience Enhancement (CURE) Workshops, conducted by senior faculty from Columbia University. The core philosophy of this program is that resilience, or "power of recovery," can be cultivated, practiced, and enhanced in preparation for future major stressful events. The CURE program has been specially designed for individuals who have been affected by the 9/11 attacks, and for those who work with affected populations. There is no cost and will be held in Lower Manhattan.

    Remaining Workshops:
    Session 2: February 27-March 27 on Tuesdays, 1:30-3:30 pm
    Session 3: February 27-March 27 on Tuesdays, 5:30-7:30 pm

    For more information, to make a scheduling request, or to enroll, contact Theresa Frey, CPC Program Specialist:
    646.289.3098 x12
  • WCC & Salvation Army Present Katrina Arts Fair

    World Cares Center (WCC) and The Salvation Army Katrina Relief Program invite Hurricane Katrina survivors, volunteers and caregivers to an Arts and Information Fair on Wednesday, February 21, from 1:00-4:00 pm. Learn about WCC's resiliency building programs and disaster preparedness trainings. Experience a sampling of the holistic arts offered at WCC's September Space Midtown, an art project for kids, and an art exhibit honoring survivors of the Gulf Hurricanes, "After the Rain: Celebrating Memories, Supporting Mental Health." At September Space Midtown, 520 Eighth Avenue, 11th floor.

    Download the Flyer (pdf):

    RSVP required:
    646.289.3098 x10
  • Salvation Army Hosts Circus for Gulf Coast Survivors

    On February 20, from 12:00-4:00 pm, the Salvation Army of Greater NY in collaboration with Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus will be hosting a "Mardi Gras Celebration" at the Salvation Army's Central Citadel office at 221 East 52nd Street in Manhattan. Adults and kids are invited to experience a free circus performance, food and refreshments, and music and socializing.

    Download the Flyer (pdf):

    RSVP to Diana do Santos:
  • New Sikhism Brochures Available in 5 Languages

    The best way to overcome prejudice and discrimination is to erase ignorance through education that reflects a pluralistic value. The Sikh Coalition website provides some resources that may be of use in educating people on Sikhs, Sikh practices, and Sikh concerns. Since 9/11 the Sikh Community continues to be victimized by bias crimes and employer discrimination – because Sikh men are sometimes mistakenly perceived to be Muslims because of their beards and turbans.


Preparedness Initiatives

  • Downloadable Ready NY Preparedness Guides

    OEM's Ready NY preparedness campaign is designed to help New Yorkers better prepare for all types of emergencies. The following preparedness guides and brochures are available online:
    • Emergency Planning for Small & Mid-Sized Companies
    • Hurricanes and New York City
    • Pet Preparedness
    • Ready NY Household Preparedness Guide
    • Ready NY: Pocket Guide
    • Seniors & People with Disabilities

    To download these guides, click here.

  • OEM Reminds NYC: Winter is Here

    An arctic cold front has hit the NY region, and temperatures in the city have dropped to season lows. Even when the temperature is not that low, strong winds and low wind chill values will keep the air bitter. OEM reminds New Yorkers to stay safe and warm in the cold weather.

  • OEM Tip This Week: The Cold Causes Worse Than Colds

    Cold weather can put you at risk for far worse than the common cold. Hypothermia and frostbite are the most common cold-induced illnesses, and they can be life threatening if left unchecked. When the temperature drops, it's important to keep your body sheltered from the air. Hypothermia's symptoms include slurred speech, sluggishness, confusion, dizziness, shallow breathing, unusual behavior, and slow, irregular heartbeat; those for frostbite include gray, white or yellow skin discoloration, numbness, and waxy feeling skin.
  • FEMA's Helpline Telephone Numbers

    Information on the status of disaster assistance and other needs is just a phone call away. The Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) and NYS's toll-free helpline numbers are available for those who have questions once they have registered. Callers may check the status of their application for assistance from the Upstate NY storms and floods; and get answers and referrals to applicable agencies and organizations.

    The FEMA Helpline is 800.621.FEMA (3362) and is open 8:00 am-8:00 pm daily.

    Learn how to get help:
  • FDNY's Fire Safety Tips: Using Heaters

    NYC's Fire Department (FDNY) warns that safe measures and precautions should always be taken to ensure a safe, warm home through the winter. Heating equipment is the leading cause of home fires during the months of December, January and February. Learn what you need to know about furnaces, space heaters, coal and wood stoves, fireplaces, and smoke detectors.

    Read FDNY's Fire Safety Tips for Heaters:
  • ARC Tip of the Day: Practice Makes Perfect

    The American Red Cross (ARC) recommends that you conduct fire drills and practice evacuating twice a year. Drive your planned evacuation route and plot alternate routes on a map in case main roads are impassible or gridlocked. Practice earthquake and tornado drills at home, school and work. Commit a weekend to update phone numbers, disaster supplies and review your plan with everyone.

  • Flu Preparedness

    • CDC Issues Pre-Pandemic Guidance
      On February 1, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released the "Interim Pre-Pandemic Planning Guidance: Community Strategy for Pandemic Influenza Mitigation in the United States - Early Targeted Layered use of Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions" that focuses on non-pharmaceutical measures (interventions other than vaccination and drug treatment) that might be useful during a flu pandemic to reduce its harm. There are tailored planning guides in the Appendices for businesses, child care programs, schools, faith-based and community organizations, and individuals and families.

      Of particular interest to NYDIS and its members and partners is the Pandemic Influenza Community Mitigation Interim Planning Guide for Faith-Based and Community Organizations (see pp 97-101 Appendix 8):

      Download the full Interim Guidance document (pdf):

      Download the "Faith-Based & Community Organizations Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Checklist":

    • CDC Conducts Drill for Pandemic Flu Outbreak
      Four reporters - from The NY Times, The Washington Post, The Associated Press and The Canadian Press - were allowed to watch the CDC conduct its first "full functional" avian flu exercise, where virtually everyone at CDC headquarters was involved in some way, including about 100 people packing the operations center where banks of computers and phones faced a wall full of television screens. Patient Zero, a fictional 22-year-old student who had just returned from visiting his family in Indonesia, died. The drill to determine how the CDC would respond in a real epidemic was led by Dr. Julie L. Gerberding, CDC director, who decided to have reporters present to prod states and localities to conduct similar drills. Asked whether the human race survives, one official gave only a hint: the exercise never really ends.

      To find out how all the "victims" fared and if the reporter "survived", read Donald McNeil, Jr.'s NY Times February 1 article:

    • Medical Volunteers Flu Guidance
      The "Pandemic Influenza Planning Guidance for Medical Reserve Corps Units" provides a broad range of pandemic influenza planning and response actions that can be adapted and used by MRC units nationwide. MRC leaders and volunteers play an important role in building on existing public health infrastructure in their communities and will likely provide support in the event of an influenza pandemic.

      Download the MRC Guidance (pdf):

      For information about the NYC MRC contact:
      Anne Rinchiuso, MPH - Medical Reserve Corps Coord. NYC DOHMH - Bureau of Emergency Mgmt.

We Recommend

  • Post Your Resources on NYDIS.org

    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".

  • Article: Building a Disaster Public Education Program

    The January issue of Natural Hazards Newsletter features an article on identifying content that should be included in national standards for any disaster public education program. Emergency managers recognize that a well-informed, prepared citizenry provides for more positive disaster outcomes. Data collected from recent disasters indicates that public education should be a higher priority. One study showed, surprisingly, that people are not making additional preparations or familiarizing themselves with local or state emergency plans.

    Read the entire article:

    Download EMAP's "Assessing Your Disaster Public Awareness Program: A Guide to Strengthening Public Education" Report:
  • USFA Offers Flu Preparedness Guidelines

    "Pandemic Influenza Planning and Preparation Best Practices Model", the US Fire Administration (USFA) offers this draft interim guidance to all service agencies, including fire, police, emergency medical services, public works, 911 call centers, and emergency management. The best practices are designed to promote the development of community-specific guidelines and operational protocols to meet the challenge of a pandemic outbreak while not affecting normal daily response activities.

    Download the USFA's Guideline draft (pdf):
  • Ready.gov Offers Ready Business

    Designed as a call-to-action for business leaders, DHS' Ready Campaign created Ready Business Mentoring Initiative, designed to help owners and managers of small and medium-sized businesses prepare for emergencies. The RBMI includes the Ready Business Mentoring Guides that teach business owners and managers about affordable ways to better protect their businesses. Business and community leaders will learn how to host and deliver business preparedness workshops and training sessions, and outline how businesses can plan to stay in business, talk to employees, and protect assets.

    Learn about the RBMI:

    Learn about the Mentoring Guides:
  • Ready.gov Offers Guidelines for Pet Owners

    DHS urges pet owners to prepare for the unexpected, such as assembling an animal emergency supply kit and developing a pet care buddy system. Whether you decide to stay put in an emergency or evacuate, you will need to make plans in advance for your pets. Plan in advance for shelter alternatives and make a back-up emergency plan in case you can't care for your animals yourself.

    Download the Brochure (pdf):
  • WTC Exhibition at the NYS Museum

    "The World Trade Center: Rescue, Recovery, Response" is a major long-term exhibition that tells the story of the WTC, the rescue efforts after the attacks, the evidence recovery operation at the Staten Island landfill, and the public response to the 9/11 events. The exhibition, open to the public, includes many objects, images, videos and computer stations documenting these historical events.

    For more information:

  • Tribute WTC Visitor Center Open Daily

    Daily Walking Tours led by participants in these events provide uniquely personal perspectives on the events of February 26, 1993 and September 11, 2001. The Center will remain in place until the permanent WTC Memorial and Museum are completed.

    Are you interested in being a volunteer? Contact:
    Rachael Grygorcewicz

  • Book Review: Cities at Risk

    Milano The New School for Management and Urban Policy just published "Cities at Risk: Catastrophe, Recovery and Renewal in New York and New Orleans", an edited volume of essays by leading thinkers nationwide exploring the lessons of 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina. It tackles the critical questions of how cities can prepare for, respond to and rebuild after large-scale disasters.

    Download "Cities at Risk" (pdf):

    Order a hard copy:
  • 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

  • Helping Others in Times of Stress - Long Island

    Thursday, February 15, and Thursday, February 22
    1:30-4:00 pm
    Mineola, LI

    This Disaster services course from the Nassau Red Cross chapter provides a framework for understanding stress factors affecting emergency and disaster relief workers and the people they serve. The course is intended for disaster workers and other first responders. It will be held at the ARC Headquarters at 195 Willis Avenue. Attendees receive an ARC Psychological First Aid certificate.

    To register for either date:
    516.747.3500 x242

  • NYSEMA Emergency Management Conference

    Tuesday, February 20 - Thursday, February 22
    Genesee Grande Hotel
    Syracuse, NY

    The NYS Emergency Management Association is holding its annual Winter Conference. Topics on the agenda include Water Quality, Animal Response Issues, Pandemic Flu, NIMS Training, Resource Typing and Tracking, and Homeland Security and Emergency Management Updates.

    To register:
  • Pandemic Preparedness Summit

    Wednesday, February 21, 8:00 - 3:00 pm
    NYU Medical Center, Manhattan

    The NY Metro Infragard Members Alliance presents "Pandemic Preparedness: The Case for Public-Private Collaboration" to be held at NYU Hospitals Center at 550 First Avenue in Schwartz Lecture Hall F. This summit will bring together national, regional and local leadership from the private and public sectors to share perspectives and plans, and to discuss current gaps in health and resource management. Former US Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Tommy Thompson will introduce the conference.

    Download the Flyer (pdf):

    To register for the event:
  • Couples Communications for NYC First Responders

    Saturday, March 10 - Sunday, March 11
    IBM Learning Center
    Armonk, NY

    The New York Disaster Counseling Coalition (NYDCC) is hosting the 2007 "Renewing Relationships" couples communication weekend program. It is free for first responders and their spouse/domestic partner.

    Download the Flyer (pdf):

    To register:

  • Care for the Caregivers: Lessons Learned Conference

    Friday, March 30, 9:00 am-1:00 pm
    475 Riverside Drive, Manhattan

    The closing conference for the Care for the Caregivers Interfaith Project Grant sponsored by the September 11 Fund - United Way and the American Red Cross is entitled, "Care for the Caregivers: Lessons Learned and the Life We Lived." Remarks will be made by The NY Community Trust: Irfan Hasan; Roberta Samet; The American Red Cross; Rockefeller Advisors; NYDIS; Black Psychiatrists of Greater NY; CORL; The Interfaith Center; Circle of Life Facilitators; MCN; Admiral Circle; Lutheran Relief Fund; Church World Service; AGPA; the People's Institute; Anti-Racist Alliance; the Baptist Minister's Conference and elected/appointed officials.

    Contact Rev. Willard W. C. Ashley, D.Min., D.H.:
    Project Director, Care for the Caregivers Interfaith Program

  • Conference for Voluntary Organizations in Disasters

    Tuesday, April 17 - Friday, April 20
    Albuquerque, New Mexico

    "Partnerships in Motion" is the subject for VOAD's 15th annual conference. The conference will begin with the kick-off reception and dinner the evening of April 17, plenary sessions and workshops April 18 and 19, and a closing plenary the morning of April 20 that will summarize the conference outcomes and declare the priorities for the year. Information on workshops, registration, and agenda schedule will be coming soon.

  • LI/NYC Emergency Management Conference

    Wednesday, May 30 - Thursday, May 31
    Melville, Long Island

    The 14th Annual LI/NYC Emergency Management Conference, "Together: Ready for Anything" will be held at the Long Island Hilton.

  • ASPCA & NYS Disaster Response Conference

    Friday, June 8 - Monday, June 11
    Suffolk County, NY

    The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) Disaster Response Services, a member of the Empire State Animal Response Team (ESART), offers a three-day conference on Technical Large Animal Emergency Rescue. Location and registration brochure will be posted April 4.

  • National Citizen Corps Conference

    Sunday, June 10 - Wednesday, June 13
    The Hilton Alexandria Mark Center
    Alexandria, Virginia

    The National Office of Citizen Corps conference on community preparedness, "Partnerships and Collaboration Through Citizen Corps", will be held in conjunction with the International Association of Emergency Managers and the National Emergency Management Association.

  • IAEM 2007 Mid-Year Meeting

    Wednesday, June 13 - Thursday, June 14
    Hilton Alexandria Mark Center
    Alexandria, Virginia

    The International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) Mid-Year Meeting is for IAEM members, emergency management professionals, Congressional staffers and federal officials with a role in homeland security and emergency management. Sessions will include briefings from top DHS officials.

    To Register online:

    For more information:

Job And Volunteer Opportunities

  • NYDIS, Two Full-Time Positions

    Moderator, NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable
    The Moderator will provide daily program administration of the NYC 9/11 Unmet Needs Roundtable. Responsibilities include scheduling case worker presentations for weekly Roundtable sessions, moderating all application sessions between donors and case workers, and managing and leading all case worker orientations for seeking client assistance.

    Director of Development
    NYDIS is seeking a full-time Director of Development to oversee all aspects of fundraising, grant writing, and institutional development. The Director of Development reports to the Executive Director and is required to attend all Board of Directors meetings. All qualified candidates should apply.

    For more information and position details, visit the NYDIS Job Opportunities page:

    To apply, please email your Cover Letter and Resume to:
    pgudaitis@nydis.org or fax to 212.669.6101.
  • 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.
  • WTC Medical Monitoring Program, Two Positions

    Outreach and Education Coordinator
    The WTC Medical Monitoring Program is a grant-funded program that provides medical monitoring examinations to 9/11 rescue, recovery and clean-up workers. The Outreach and Education Coordinator will design and coordinate campaigns for recruitment and retention of WTC responders' medical examination program, and include design and implementation of patient/worker education programs.

    Admin. Ass't to Outreach and Education Program Manager
    Duties include drafting written materials, overseeing their production and distribution, and telephone contact with vendors, clinical staff, and patients. S/he will also attend meetings internally and with other institutions and constituency groups.

    More information about these positions (pdf):

    Candidates should send cover letter and resume to Diane Stein:
    diane.stein@mssm.edu or fax 212.241.7235. No telephone calls.
  • NYC OEM, Plan Manager

    With general direction from the Director of Plan Management within the Planning and Preparedness Division, the candidate is responsible for managing the process to develop citywide emergency preparedness plans and for providing technical advice to OEM and City agency staff on plan development. In addition, the Plan Manager will be expected to work non-business hours during emergencies and will be assigned to a periodic Emergency Operations Center Team.

    For more information and position details:
  • NYC OEM, Emergency Preparedness Specialists/Managers

    Specialist/Transportation & Infrastructure Planner (JVN 061)
    In the Transportation and Infrastructure Unit within the Planning and Preparedness Division, will develop citywide emergency plans and provide technical advice to City agencies regarding their emergency planning efforts for transportation and infrastructure emergencies.

    Manager/Director of Plan Management (JVN062)
    In the Planning and Preparedness Division, will oversee a team of Plan Managers to develop, maintain and manage Citywide emergency plans.

    Specialist/Plan Manager (JVN063)
    In the Planning and Preparedness Division, under supervision from the Director of Plan Management, will develop and maintain Citywide emergency plans and develop and maintain Plan Management policies.

    Manager/Director of Logistics (JVN064)
    In the Planning and Preparedness Division, will manage a team of planners to create operational logistics plans and detailed logistics procedures for emergency response.

    Specialist/Human Services Specialist (JVN065)
    In the Planning and Preparedness-Human Services Division, will write detailed emergency response plans that describe complex operations to address the needs of disaster victims.

    To apply to these positions, please submit Resume and Cover Letter to:
    165 Cadman Plaza
    East Brooklyn, NY 11201

  • HSC, Coordinator, Preparedness and Response

    The Human Services Council of New York City, Inc. (HSC), a membership association representing the not-for-profit social service agencies throughout NYC, seeks a Coordinator, Preparedness and Response to facilitate disaster preparedness and response activities that enables the NYC human services sector to respond effectively to human needs created by major disaster.

    For a complete description of the position:

    Send cover letter and resume via email to:
    Hayyim Obadyah, Director of Preparedness and Response
  • Safe Horizon, Admin. Ass't. 9/11 Mental Health Programs

    The 9/11 Mental Health Programs, which includes The Family Assistance Center, Project Rescue and Recovery, and the Community Trauma Response Team, seeks an Administrative Assistant to manage the reception area including answering telephones, logs and data input, greeting and signing in clients and visitors, and other office duties.

    For more information and to apply online:
  • Volunteers for Upstate NY Flood Recovery Efforts

    Contact Dottie Baer, Conklin Presbyterian Flood Relief Volunteer Center:

    Kevin Page, FEMA Voluntary Agency Liaison:

    Yvonne Newell, Director of Project Recovery in Broome, Tioga and Delaware Counties:
  • NDART, Volunteer to Help Animals in Disasters

    The Humane Society of the US' (HSUS) National Disaster Animal Response Team (NDART) consists of animal care professionals, emergency services and rescue professionals. Team members are trained in community disaster response and preparedness as well as specialized response techniques for rescuing animals affected by disasters. To prepare yourself to help animals in a disaster, there are courses offered by FEMA and ARC.

    To find out more about the program and the recommended courses:

    To apply to be a Team member, fill out the application:

Make a Gift to NYDIS

  • Support NYDIS - Donate Online

    If 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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