The number of Americans who turn to the Internet, social media and mobile technologies during disasters is on the rise, a new American Red Cross study shows. And while people should still rely on 9-1-1 in emergency situations, researchers found that the majority of Americans feel they should also be able to receive timely assistance from local and national response agencies when they post messages in social media.
WHAT: A Facebook Live event to announce the results of the second Red Cross survey of Americans' use of social media and other technologies during disasters. Officials from the Red Cross, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Facebook will also discuss the implications of the study and how both individuals and responders can make use of the Internet, social media and mobile technology in emergency situations. Media are welcome to view the Facebook Live event and submit questions on the Facebook platform.
WHO: Trevor Riggen, Senior Director of Disaster Services, American Red Cross
Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency
Brooke Oberwetter, Associate Manager, Policy Communications
WHY: These two new surveys show that the vast majority of Americans believe that response organizations should be monitoring social media during disasters and acting quickly to help those in need. Emergency response organizations like the Red Cross, FEMA and others now face both new challenges to harness the power of these technologies as well as opportunities to engage with people during times of disaster.
WHEN: Wednesday, August 24, 2011, 3:30 p.m. CDT
About the Speakers
William Fugate: Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Mr. Fugate was appointed by President Obama and was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on May 13, 2009 to serve as the Administrator of FEMA. In his role, Mr. Fugate is in charge of 7,603 employees across the country working to support citizens in the event of a natural disaster. Prior to coming to FEMA, Mr. Fugate served as Director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM).
Trevor Riggen: Director of Mass Care for the American Red Cross. Mr. Riggen serves as the Red Cross lead for feeding, sheltering, and bulk distribution in response to a manmade or natural disaster. A central Illinois native, he previously worked at Habitat for Humanity International, where he managed a nationwide congressional recruitment program and led local Habitat affiliates in government relations and housing advocacy development. He also has several years’ experience in local nonprofit program management, including early childhood literacy, after-school programming, and emergency planning for public school districts.