To help libraries stay prepared in advance of Hurricane Laura and other natural disasters, we wanted to share the following information from our previous blog post on hurricane and tropical storm management; you can find the original blog post here: https://www.tsl.texas.gov/ld/librarydevelopments/2019/09/23/update-hurricane-tropical-storm-emergency-management/.
To find updated information on Hurricane Laura, please visit https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/#Laura. Preparedness tips are uploaded to the HENTF dashboard, https://fema.connectsolutions.com/hentf/, along with key messages and graphics from the National Hurricane Center. Please note that the HENTF dashboard may require an Adobe Connect download to open.
Libraries are never more needed than in times of crisis, and it is in times of crisis that we demonstrate why we libraries are so essential.
You can access hurricane/tropical storm disaster recovery resources for libraries, archives, and cultural institutions on TSLAC’s website. You will find current state, federal, and professional association points of contact for disaster preparedness and response and emergency management, as well as links to helpful tips from FEMA Federal Emergency Management Agency, Office of the Governor Greg Abbott Emergency Management and Texas Hurricane Center, Texas Department of Public Safety Division of Emergency Management, the National Hurricane Center, American Library Association, Texas Library Association, The Library of Congress, Society of American Archivists, Society of Southwest Archivists, and more.
Houston Public Library Director Dr. Rhea Lawson wrote to us after Hurricane Harvey in 2017 to report on the status of damage to her libraries. Dr. Lawson made the following wonderful observation:
“As you know, for so many people libraries are a vital lifeline. We recognize that during catastrophic times libraries are even more essential as people need a trusted familiar anchor and touchstone in the community to remind them that everything will be all right again. But most all—our mission right now is to restore the joy in the eyes of children and adults who have seen so much destruction, and experienced so much fear and uncertainty.”
TSLAC will continue to work with federal, state, and local organizations to find ways to assist libraries and archives as they deal with weather-related emergencies.