The 2008 American Preparedness Project: Why Parents May Not Heed Evacuation Orders and What Emergency Planners, Families and Schools Need to Know

Redlener, Irwin E.; Grant, Roy F.; Abramson, David M.; Johnson, Dennis G.

Since 2002, the National Center for Disaster Preparedness (NCDP) at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health, and The Children's Health Fund (CHF), have conducted annual surveys of public attitudes and personal preparedness in the aftermath of the terror attacks of September 11, 2001. Produced in collaboration with the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion (MIPO), each is a random-dial telephone survey of approximately 1,300 - 1,500 adults stratified according to US Census 2000 data. Current and trend data from these surveys reveal a disjuncture between Americans' awareness and sensitivity to possible natural and man-made threats and their consistently low levels of personal preparedness. Each survey, including the current, have included trended questions as well as "one-off" questions appropriate to the given time period. Trended questions ask about confidence in government; willingness and ability to evacuate; personal and family preparedness plans; personal sacrifice; community preparedness; and perceptions and engagement of all-hazard preparedness. All questions are cross-tabulated with a variety of demographic characteristics including race, age, gender, income, and region, size of community, political affiliation, and education. Further, select questions establishing a division of respondent (e.g. those having personal and family preparedness plans vs. those who do not) are cross-tabulated with other selected questions to observe correlations (e.g. awareness of community preparedness plans). The surveys are developed by NCDP and CHF investigators in conjunction with MIPO, who administers the survey, codes the data, and produces the frequency tables.

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National Center for Disaster Preparedness
National Center for Disaster Preparedness
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May 25, 2010