Over the coming months, EMPA will be hosting a continuing series of webinars on a range of topics of interest to all emergency communicators. Subscribe to our mailing list below to keep informed and click below to see details for the April & May webinars.


APRIL 2021

Wednesday 28 April, 4:00-5:00 PM PT  |  5:00-6:00 PM MT  |  7:00-8:00 PM ET (USA) 
Thursday 29 April, 10:00-11:00 AM (AEST)  |  12:00-1:00 PM (NZ)


Getting it right

Tailoring communications and engagement between disability groups and Emergency Management

UNESCAP states that people with disabilities are 4 times more likely to die in a disaster than those without disabilities. Research into this area highlights a need for all parties to work together and share/exchange cultural knowledge, communication, and skills that will work for everyone in all emergency situations.

As a practitioner in disability inclusive disaster risk reduction (DiDRR), Leyla Craig has been involved in local and international DiDRR projects focussing on Deaf Communities in Australia and Southeast Asia.  Her work involves exploring the underlying causes and gaps that exists between Deaf Communities, disability groups, and emergency services as well as identifying sustainable solutions that meets the specific needs of different disability groups within the disaster and risk space.  The personal lived experiences as a Deaf person and the disconnects seen between Deaf Communities as well as disability groups and emergency services has led her to become a PhD research candidate at The University of Sydney focussing on Deaf Communities and Organisations’ capacities to respond to and support those affected by hazards and disasters.  At present, Leyla is working on Disability Inclusion with Fire and Rescue NSW.        

Leyla will be joined by Sean Sweeney from Sweeney Interpreting. Sean has become one of the most recognisable faces in Australian media since leading the Auslan interpreting team during the 2019-20 bushfires in NSW. He will share his experiences and perspectives on interpreting emergency news on TV.


leilani craig

Leyla Craig 
PhD Candidate at University of Sydney 

sean sweeney

Sean Sweeney 
Sweeney Interpreters

MAY 2021

Tuesday 25 May, 4:00-5:00 PM PT  |  5:00-6:00 PM MT  |  7:00-8:00 PM ET (USA) 
Wednesday 26 May, 10:00-11:00 AM (AEST)  |  12:00-1:00 PM (NZ)


The Mileti Effect: Fifty Years of Risk Communication Research 

Dennis Mileti, who passed away due to complications from COVID-19 on January 31, 2021, was a luminary in the field of hazards and disaster research and is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading risk communication scholars. For over 40 years he advocated for creating messages and warnings that are clear, concise, consistent, and delivered via trusted messengers through multiple channels. He was a champion for developing public communications that encouraged people to prepare for and respond appropriately to disaster risk. He was such a fierce advocate for evidence-informed action in emergency management because he knew that this research could save lives.

This panel presentation will feature Dr. Mileti’s former students, collaborators, and the beneficiaries of his research. Each panelist will take about 10 minutes to share 3 major lessons that they learned from working with him or using his research over the years. We hope you can join us and use this as an opportunity to hone your own emergency management and media communications work as we honor the long legacy of this leader in our field.   



Lori Peek

Professor Lori Peek
Professor of Sociology and Director of the Natural Hazards Center, University of Colorado Boulder 

Mark Benthien
Director for Communication, Education, and Outreach at the Southern California Earthquake Center (SCEC), University of Southern California 


Nnenia Campbell
Research Associate at the Natural Hazards Center University of Colorado Boulder and Deputy Director, The William Averette Anderson Fund


A/Professor Jeannette Sutton
Associate Professor and Director of the Information Science PhD program in the College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security, and Cybersecurity, University at Albany, State University of New York   


Professor Michele Wood
Professor and Department Chair in the Department of Public Health, California State University, Fullerton