Special Needs Registry Prepares People for Disasters
SOMERSET COUNTY, NJ — In conjunction with National Disability Awareness Month in October, Somerset County is encouraging residents to sign up for the New Jersey Register Ready Registry. This registry is a safety net for residents who may find it difficult to evacuate during an emergency.
Somerset County Office of Emergency Management, in partnership with the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management and the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, urges residents to take advantage of this service and sign up at www.registerready.nj.gov.
“The time to get ready for a disaster is before one occurs,” said Freeholder Deputy Director Robert Zaborowski, emergency management liaison. “You can prepare by making an evacuation plan for yourself, your family and your pets; by talking with friends and family who can help you get to safety when a crisis hits; by preparing a readiness kit of things you’ll need if you must evacuate or have to remain in place for an extended period of time; and by taking advantage of services available to you to learn about potential emergencies.”
“The New Jersey Special Needs Registry is free, voluntary, and strictly confidential. It is designed to help people who may have difficulty during an evacuation because of physical or cognitive limitations, language barriers or lack of transportation,” said Freeholder Patricia Walsh, human services liaison.
“Registering will help first responders, such as police, fire and rescue squad personnel, make the best use of limited time and resources to help people with no other options for evacuation during an emergency,” she said.
Residents with special needs, or caregivers on their behalf, can register electronically at www.registerready.nj.gov. Registration online is available in numerous languages. Or, they can call New Jersey ’s toll-free 2-1-1 telephone service, which will register residents, offer free translation and provide TTY services for hearing-impaired individuals.
Additionally, residents may obtain paper registration forms from their municipality’s Office of Emergency Management or they can print them from the Somerset County website at www.co.somerset.nj.us/division/emergencyman.html. All forms and inquiries should be sent to the resident’s municipality. A listing of Somerset County municipalities is available on the Somerset County website at www.co.somerset.nj.us/towndir.html.