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In collaboration with other State offices responsible for implementing disaster preparedness plans, DDS provides guidance, tools, methods, and strategies to ensure equal access for individuals with disabilities during emergencies.  Focus areas may include physical and communication access, personal care assistance services, medication needs, and care programs.

Shelter Planning Guides and Assessment Tools

Mega-Shelter Planning Guide

National Mass Care Strategy

DCF Sheltering Guidelines for Children and Families

CDC Environmental Health Shelter Assessment Tool

“Show Me: A Communications Tool for Emergency Shelters” Massachusetts Dpt of Public Health

Pet Friendly Sheltering Plan


The NJ Group for Access and Integration Needs in Emergencies and Disasters (NJ GAINED) acts as an advisory board to the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management (NJOEM) and the NJ Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (OHSP) regarding issues affecting people with access and functional needs (AFN) in New Jersey before, during and after an emergency or disaster. 

The NJ Office of Emergency Management, the NJ Division of Disability Services, and the Progressive Center for Independent Living form the leadership team for NJ GAINED. The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management carries out administrative responsibilities for the group.

To contact NJ GAINED, e-mail Kelly Boyd at: or 609-963-6818.

NJ GAINED Meeting Minutes

Related Information

Department of Homeland Security: Disaster Preparedness for Individuals with Disabilities

CDC Emergency Preparedness: Including People with Disabilities

FEMA: Overview of Threat and Hazard Identification, Risk Assessment, and State Preparedness Report

FEMA: AFN Measures

Emergency Preparedness Video for People with Disabilities

Animal Emergency

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