On June 30, 2015, Wireless RERC researchers Salimah LaForce and DeeDee Bennett, PhD presented results of the 2014 Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) Survey and a Survey of Alert Originators Use of WEA at a webinar hosted by the Georgia Emergency Preparedness Coalition for Individuals with Disabilities and Older Adults. WEAs are a component of the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), an agency of the Department of Homeland Security. During an emergency, alert and warning officials need to provide the public with life-saving information quickly. IPAWS provides public safety officials with an effective way to alert and warn the public about serious emergencies. However, research has shown that WEAs are not always effective for people with disabilities. This webinar shared information about awareness of and access to WEAs by people with disabilities.
The webinar, produced by the Alternative Media Access Center (AMAC) at Georgia Tech, is one of few to ever provide both captions and American Sign Language (ASL) interpreting for the audience.