Disaster Preparedness, Disability Awareness, and Disability Inequality: A Study of Hong Kong’s Property Management Sector

Yung YAU*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Book Chapters | Papers in Conference ProceedingsReference Entrypeer-review

Abstract

Inclusion of persons with disability (PWDs) to the society is one of the important Sustainable Development Goals advocated by the United Nations. An inclusive built environment facilitates their full participation and enjoyment of equal opportunities. To this end, it is necessary to remove the “manageable” environmental obstacles in our buildings. While many previous studies worked on inclusive design of built environment, little emphasis has been placed on the management issues. In particular, PWDs have often been ignored in the formulation and execution of crisis management or evacuation plan. Against this background, this chapter aims to provide a preliminary inquiry into how PWDs are treated in the context of disaster preparedness. Data were collected in Hong Kong through a survey on 16 residential developments and 8 in-depth interviews with PWDs and property managers. It is found that in none of the 16 residential developments investigated the property management agent had kept a register of residents with disabilities who might help in case of emergency or disaster (like flooding, fire, or terrorist attack). There was no clearly written protocol or manual for the property management personnel on how to assist these residents to evacuate from the buildings. No training was offered to the property management personnel to raise their disability awareness. The interviewed PWDs expressed that they were never told what they should do in case of emergency. Drawing on the research findings, this chapter makes a number of recommendations for achieving disability equality in the local property management sector.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Handbook of Disaster Research
EditorsAmita SINGH
PublisherSpringer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd.
Chapter101-1
Pages1-13
EditionLive Reference Entry Work
ISBN (Electronic)9789811688003
ISBN (Print)9789811688003
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2022

Keywords

  • Disability awareness
  • Disability discrimination
  • Disability inequality
  • Disability preparedness
  • Inclusive built environment
  • Property management

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