Issues & AdvocacyIssues & Advocacy
If you are among the many communities in Hurricane Sandy's path, members of the AIA National Disaster Assistance Committee send their hopes for your safety. Having worked closely with AIA Components and colleagues following other severe weather events, we are reaching out to offer our support.
The next 36 hours will be filled with uncertainty, soon to be replaced by the need to assist clients and communities in evaluating damage caused by the storm and onwards into recovery. As experienced disaster responders, we have resources that can help better prepare for this important role. Visit our web page to get an overview of the AIA Disaster Response Program: http://www.aia.org/disasterresponse/index.htm
A commitment to helping others is a core value of our profession. Architects often volunteer their time and services if asked by government agencies to help ensure preservation of a community’s health, safety, and welfare. However, during such situations, a licensed architect may be exposed to questions of liability even though he or she is acting in good faith. Many states have "Good Samaritan" statutes that cover certain volunteers from liability during an emergency situation, but many have no such protections. It's important to keep this in mind as Hurricane Sandy continues to damage the East Coast over the next several days. Should you wish to offer your expertise, seek appropriate legal counsel as to the protections that apply in the jurisdiction where you volunteer.
I invite you to visit the "For Leaders" page on AIA.org over the next few days to keep in touch and share your experiences and needs. Together, we'll find the right path for repairing and rebuilding the communities most impacted by the hurricane.
Rachel Minnery, AIA
Chair, AIA Disaster Assistance Committee"