Imagine it’s been three days since a flood inundated your home. Since you are still unable to enter it for safety reasons, you and your children have been living in a shelter. You attend a community meeting where a local official declares that the emergency response had been excellent and since the situation was proceeding smoothly, the city has moved from “response” mode to “recovery.” How would you feel?
Interaction with the community in the midst of a crisis requires tact and sensitivity, whether it's over the phone, via e-mail, face-to-face, or at a public forum. People will experience a wide range of responses to the crisis, so be prepared for high levels of emotion.
Be prepared to be empathetic and address these common concerns: