Emergency Management for Non-English Speakers

Meghan McPherson found some emergency management inspiration in, of all places, a nail salon. The result is a program that dispenses emergency preparedness information to workers in the service industry in their native languages The Assistant Director of the Center for Health Innovation at Adelphi University tells UAPI Co-Director Richard Suttie how she was sitting in a salon watching news on Hurricane Mathew and discussing it with her Mandarin-speaking stylist when the idea occurred. McPherson and her team visited 120 nail salons and were eventually able to distribute 450 information packets in Mandarin, Korean and Spanish. The next phase will visit restaurant workers and add the French Creole language to the materials. Adelphi University emergency management undergraduates, graduate students and faculty are expected to participate. “I think it’s important for students to see how emergency management works in the field,” McPherson said. “It’s not always running after a hurricane.”

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