“Governments love to talk about ‘shared responsibility’ in a disaster – but does anyone know what it means?” This is a question posed by academics from the Queensland University of Technology (including my former UNE student and then colleague, Professor Amanda Kennedy).  They conclude:

…we need a better understanding of what “shared responsibility” actually means. Questions we need to answer include:

* Who makes the decision over the allocation of tasks at each stage of the disaster?

* Have all relevant groups and people been included in agreeing upon this allocation?

* Have duties been communicated and understood?

* Have allowances been made for unexpected situations?

Until we have these answers, the trauma of natural disasters will be compounded by confusion, inaction, political blame games and a lack of resources. And it will be individuals and vulnerable communities left to pick up the pieces.

You can read a report of their research via ‘The Conversation’ (21 March, 2022).

This blog is made possible with generous financial support from the Australasian College of Paramedicine, the Australian Paramedics Association (NSW)Natural Hazards Research AustraliaNSW Rural Fire Service Associationand  NSW SES Volunteers Association. I am responsible for the content in this post including any errors or omissions. Any opinions expressed are mine, and do not necessarily reflect the opinion or understanding of the donors.