Natural disasters take a heavy toll on human societies. While in terms of the overall number of disasters, 2011 was a relatively quiet year, it was a terrible year for some developed countries. The year began with once-in-a-hundred year floods in Australia, quickly followed by a devastating earthquake in Christchurch and a month later by a horrific earthquake, tsunami and nuclear accident in Japan. The United States was hit particularly hard as Mississippi River floods were followed by a string of deadly tornadoes, the worst drought in generations, terrible wildfires and then Hurricane Irene, which closed down much of the country’s east coast for several days. Evidence has shown that incidences of domestic and sexual violence rise in the aftermath of natural disasters, a phenomenon that has received scant attention in disaster research.
On March 28, the Brookings-LSE Project on Internal Displacement and the Canadian Red Cross will host the launch of two new reports on natural disaster trends and challenges: The Brookings-LSE Project’s “2011 Annual Review of Natural Disasters” and the Canadian Red Cross, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies' “Predictable, Preventable: Best Practices for Addressing Interpersonal and Self-Directed Violence During and After Disasters.” Panelists will include Senior Fellow Elizabeth Ferris, co-director of the Brookings-LSE Project on Internal Displacement and Susan Johnson, general director for international operations at the Canadian Red Cross. Nan Buzard, senior director of International Response & Programs at the American Red Cross, will moderate the discussion.
After the program, panelists will take audience questions.