NAACP and FEMA partner to advance equity in disaster relief for Black communities nationwide (includes video story)

On Sept. 22, the NAACP partnered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to sign an agreement advancing equity disaster relief for Black communities across the country. They first created this formal relationship in 2013.

The progression of climate change is the main reason for an increased number of natural disasters and Black communities are disproportionately impacted socially and physically, according to a study published by Rice University. This agreement therefore sparks a hope for change in recovery efforts and emergency management operations.

In South Florida, the collaboration can help Black neighborhoods with one of many harmful natural disasters: flooding. Scientific American released a research study revealing urban flooding affects communities of color who are not likely to obtain resources to properly recover from a natural disaster.

President Harold Ford of the South Dade NAACP branch says this agreement is extremely impactful for a portion of the Black population susceptible to flooding in Broward and Miami-Dade counties.

“I think the agreement definitely opens the door and creates an opportunity for us, the NAACP, to work with not just the federal government, but the local government to address these issues,” said Ford, who has worked at the NAACP for around four years.

Alexandra Howard is a senior pursuing a dual degree in digital journalism and political science. She intends to later graduate from law school and become an immigration lawyer and political journalist.