need to seize those moments to make change and make the lessons learned become future actions. She urged participants not to become weary in doing good and important work.

CHILDREN, YOUTH, AND FAMILIES TASK FORCES FOR RECOVERY

Lieutenant Commander Jonathan White, deputy director of the Office of Human Services Emergency Preparedness and Response at ACF within HHS, stressed that responding to the needs of children in disasters is not about “pediatric populations” or “at-risk populations.” It is about children, youth, and families, and the world as children encounter it. It is vital, he said, to have a strategy that is multisectoral and multidisciplinary.

“As for-profit entities, the vast majority of America’s child care providers are ineligible for FEMA public assistance. Many are also ineligible for Small Business Administration disaster loans because their profit margins are too small to make them credit-worthy.”

—Jonathan White

White highlighted three key challenges to meeting the needs of children, youth, and families in a disaster. One of the foremost challenges is the limited interoperability of human services, public health and medical (including behavioral health), and emergency management systems. Of these three areas, White noted that human services is least connected to the other two. Second is the profound vulnerabilities of child care providers and the formidable financial barriers to child care recovery. White explained that a public hospital that suffers an uninsured loss looks to FEMA for public assistance. However, as for-profit entities, the vast majority of America’s child care providers are ineligible for FEMA public assistance. Many are also ineligible for Small Business Administration disaster loans because their profit margins are too small to make them credit-worthy. As noted earlier, child care workers are not well funded at baseline, with average earnings of about $21,000 per year. Third, disaster human services in the United States have historically focused on sheltered populations, not communities; however, the human services purview is the entire population.



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