"Territorial belonging" of individuals and its impact on the response to a disaster
Finally, practitioners outlined the importance of belonging in disaster response, which may also cause problems for the citizens who have been evacuated: “The territorial belonging. If you take someone out of their context, they collapse. Think of taking a citizen from Parioli to Tor Bella Monaca. You kill him” (G3; R - see source document for full reference), and for the areas they have been evacuated from: “Amatrice’s mayor urged people not to leave, or the city died” (G3; R). Furthermore, some citizens may not want to be evacuated, and disaster workers may need extra support from law enforcement to move citizens to safe areas: “Often we are assigned the task of managing people, i.e. those who are evacuated but want to remain in the same area. So we try to manage those people in cooperation with local police” (G5; R5). “It comes to my mind that people do not want to live their homes. Wealthy people fear looting, while elderly people… do not want to leave their home, it happened to me both in L’Aquila and Amatrice. In the tent cities, elderly people would not consider the idea of going in a different place. In some cases, it is very difficult to communicate to these people that – for their own good – they should leave the territory” (G4; R7).
Cultural Factors: Livelihoods
Disaster Phases: Response
- Develop culturally aware disaster preparedness and response training
- Use trustworthy, widespread, multi-lingual, culturally appropriate and inclusive means of alerting the target population in case of disasters
- Training programmes for citizens of all ages should be developed. These are necessary to increase citizens’ knowledge of and preparedness in case of disasters. The training activities should be organized on the basis of a training strategy and should take various forms, ranging from emergency drill to workshops
- Use cultural factors to improve the effectiveness of disaster communication