Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Before its busiest season, FEMA is already worn out

Just 3,800 of the agency's 13,700 emergency workers are available right now to respond to a new disaster

 

Daniel A. Varela • Miami Herald

A FEMA employee assisted with a COVID-19 vaccination site in Miami in March, another addition to FEMA's growing workload.

WASHINGTON – Workers from the Federal Emergency Management Agency have been scouting shelters for the migrant children flooding across the southern border. They've been running corona­virus vaccination sites. And they are still managing the recovery from a string of record disasters starting with Hurricane Harvey in 2017.

On the cusp of what experts say will be an unusually destructive season of hurricanes and wildfires, just 3,800 of the agency's 13,700 emergency workers are available right now to respond to a new disaster. That's 29% fewer than were ready to deploy at the start of last year's hurricane period. Federal scientists on Thursday forecast that an above-normal hurricane season in 2021 "is most likely."

FEMA has seldom been in greater demand - becoming a kind of 911 hotline for some of President Joe Biden's most pressing policy challenges. And the men and women who have become the nation's first responders are tired.

https://www.startribune.com/before-its-busiest-season-fema-is-already-worn-out/600059559/

 

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