Disaster preparedness and response

Underpinning every disaster preparedness activity or response operation, whether large or small, is a network of laws, policies and plans which determine who does what, when and how. In 2019, IFRC Disaster Law published The Checklist on Law and Disaster Preparedness and Response (DPR Checklist), an assessment tool that guides decision-makers through a series of targeted questions designed to identify gaps and weaknesses in existing domestic laws and policies.

The DPR Checklist is structured around ten key topics, each of which is critical to timely and effective disaster preparedness and response. These topics include (but are not limited to): the institutional framework for disaster preparedness and response; disaster risk financing; contingency planning; education, training and drills; early warning and early action; states of emergency or disaster; disaster-related human mobility; housing, land and property rights in disasters; and the protection and inclusion of vulnerable groups.

The DPR Checklist is informed by recommendations developed by IFRC Disaster Law following a comprehensive review of existing literature and an analysis of the laws and policies of 20 countries, which were selected to represent a variety of regions and risk profiles. This research is published in the Multi-Country Synthesis Report on Law and Disaster Preparedness and Response.

IFRC has also developed an introductory online course on disaster preparedness and response law, which is available on the IFRC Learning Platform.