Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA) MD Bishnupada Sethi has informed that help smooth evacuation of persons having physical difficulties during calamities, it has been decided to set up a special cell for persons with disabilities (PwDs) in the OSDMA.
The decision was taken at a meeting attended by civil society organisations and officials of the Department of Social Security and Empowerment of Persons with Disability on August 20.
“The cell will operate at the OSDMA taking into consideration the special needs and vulnerability of the persons with disabilities and mainstreaming their needs into disaster management,” Sethi said.
He said the cell would look into special needs of persons with disability during evacuation, search, rescue operations, rehabilitation and resettlement during natural calamities like flood and cyclone.
The cell will make networking with both the Government and private organisations and prepare a database of persons with disabilities and organisations in the State working with such persons and prepare plans accordingly, Sethi said.
It was also decided that all the multipurpose cyclone and flood shelters would be made disable friendly by the cell
The meeting also resolved that the evacuation and search and rescue response forces like ODRAF, NDRF, Red Cross, civil defence and community level task force volunteers would be given training on special care to handle such persons.