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Native Brief: WASHINGTON - A new campaign called "Ready Indian Country" is be launched by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, known as FEMA, as part its ongoing National Preparedness Month. The new campaign will provide disaster preparedness information resources for the 565 federally recognized tribal nations and communities across the country.
The goal of Ready Indian Country is to partner with tribal leaders in asking individuals and families in Indian Country to take basic steps to prepare themselves for emergencies.
The Ready Indian Country campaign is important given the floods, fires and other natural disasters that impact Indian reservations.
"We welcome the support of the Federal government and FEMA as we endeavor to prepare our tribal citizens for the possible challenges faced through emergency management," commented Glenn Zaring, director, Office of Public Affairs, Little River Band of Ottawa Indians, based in Manistee, Michigan.
"Our tribal nations and organizations are a key member of our nation's emergency management team and this campaign will help us build on the already strong partnership we have developed," said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. "By strengthening these communities' ability to be better prepared in the face of emergencies and disasters, together we can save lives and bolster our resiliency against all hazards."
Ready Indian Country is designed to promote preparedness within tribal communities through education and outreach. It is intended to serve as a resource for Tribes to prepare their citizens and provide support in developing and implementing pre-disaster policies and procedures.
"The National Congress of American Indians supports the efforts by FEMA to include Indian Country. Tribal governments are continually striving to develop, improve, and enhance their emergency preparedness capabilities in order to better ensure the safety of their citizens. Staying proactive and creating lasting partnerships will help tribes achieve this goal and will build sustainable and resilient tribal communities in the process. NCAI appreciates this opportunity to work with FEMA and the Ready.gov program," said Jefferson Keel, President, National Congress of American Indians.
Ready Indian Country's resources include existing Ready Campaign messaging and builds on existing capacity with specific tools customized for Indian Country.
"There has been an intense effort in recent years to not only learn of federal programs which might assist our nations but to build upon the ingrained resiliency of our people. These newly announced programs will undoubtedly provide us with tools that we can use," Zaring added.
posted September 20, 2011 6:00 am edt
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