Weathering the Storm: Disaster preparedness for pro bono attorneys
This presentation will train attorneys to work with and advocate for natural disaster victims before the next disaster occurs so they can be ready to go at a moment's notice. The session will be divided into two sections: the first will cover lessons learned in advocating for disaster victims in the wake of Hurricane Harvey and discuss common issues victims struggle with, and go over effective communication and advocacy strategies for attorneys working with victims. The second section will train attorneys on the process of applying for individual and Small Business Administration assistance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the appeals process once an application for assistance is denied. We will also have a question-and-answer session for the audience at the end of the presentation.
Saundra J. Brown is the Manager of the Disaster Relief Unit at Lone Star Legal Aid. She graduated from Tulane University Law School in 1985. She has worked at Lone Star Legal Aid since 1994. She first started responding to disasters after Hurricane Allison in 2001. She became the Manager of the Disaster Relief Unit in 2010 and became the Directing Attorney of Disaster Legal Services in 2017. She has responded to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the BP Oil Spill, the West Explosion, the Texas Wildfires, the Texas Floods of 2015, 2016, and now Hurricane Harvey.
Munira Mack is the lead attorney for the Individual Assistance Program at FEMA, Washington D.C.