Emergency Preparation Toolkit for Children and Adults (CT UCEDD/LEND)

July 15, 2019

The CT LEND program spends one day at the CT Legislature learning to speak to and educate legislators about issues related to persons with disabilities living in CT. The LEND trainees meet in small groups with individual legislators. One of the groups met with CT State Representative Liz Linehan and discussed emergency preparation for persons with disabilities and shared Flipbook. "Tips For Emergency Personnel: Supporting People with Unique Access or Functional Needs (including disabilities) "Representative Linehan wanted to share it and make it more accessible for a family in her district who had a child who was a non-reader and nonverbal. Representative Linehan brought the toolkit to the Connecticut General Assembly to advocate for a bill to enhance communication between emergency responders and children and adults with disabilities in times of crisis.

The bill unanimously passed under H.B. No. 7000 An Act Concerning Training for Certain Public Safety and Emergency Services Personnel. The bill directs the UCONN UCEDD to expand and revise the communication toolkit previously developed by the UCONN UCEDD for use by emergency medical services personnel to address persons with disabilities during an emergency. This would enable firefighters, police officers, active members of ambulance services, emergency mobile psychiatric services personnel, and mental health crisis intervention services personnel to better meet the needs of a child, youth, or adult with disabilities when needing help. Included would be techniques for serving and interacting with those with autism spectrum disorder, cognitive impairment, and nonverbal learning disorders during emergencies when verbal communication may be hindered.