Special Needs Population Registry
(1/18/2006) -NEWS RELEASE-
NEW HAVEN BEGINS HOMELAND SECURITY INITIATIVE – VOLUNTARY SPECIAL NEEDS POPULATION REGISTRY
New Haven: Beginning Tuesday, Jan. 15th 2006 the City of New Haven will begin its effort to compile a Voluntary Special Needs Population Registry in order to better assist its special needs and elderly population in the event of an emergency. As part of this pilot program, the City is mailing out Voluntary Registration forms to the 2,500 households in the 06512 zip code, East Shore. The City’s Hazard Mitigation Plan indicated that this section of the city is the most likely to be evacuated in the event of a significant Hurricane. Later this year, similar forms will be mailed city-wide.
The information provided on the Voluntary Special Needs Population Registry will enhance the city’s evacuation plan and help the city’s Emergency Management team located and evaluate special needs and elderly populations – estimated to be total as many as 32,000 people – in case of an emergency. All information gathered will remain confidential and used solely for emergency purposes.
New Haven’s effort is believed to be the largest in Connecticut and is motivated by three factors. First, the State Dept. of Emergency Management and Homeland Security requested that municipalities gather data on special needs populations in order to help with a regional evacuation plan. Second, completion of the Voluntary Special Needs Population Registry is a prerequisite for receipt of all future Federal Homeland Security Grant Funds. Finally, Hurricane Katrina demonstrated that special needs populations can and - most often do - suffer the most when an emergency occurs.
“One lesson of Katrina is that government must be proactive in order to protect our most vulnerable neighbors. We’re determined to this,” said Mayor John DeStefano, Jr., “and this initiative should send a clear signal to all Connecticut residents that New Haven intends to be a leader in this vital area.”