IN the lead-up to International Day for Disaster Reduction, Social Welfare Minister Dr Jiko Luveni launched the Include Disability In Disasters (I DID) campaign.
Head of United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) Timothy Wilcox said roughly one in six people worldwide lived with some form of disability.
"This is a substantial group of people that need to be included when making plans to prepare for a disaster, yet often we find that such planning does not exist even in developed and wealthy countries," Mr Wilcox said.
"People living with disabilities are often more vulnerable to disasters because they are more likely to be poor with limited access to education, health care, shelter, food and financial resources to recover from a disaster.
"Emergency planners often compound these vulnerabilities by failing to consider their needs."
He said providing for persons with disabilities during disasters often required simple measures such as planning in advance.
Dr Luveni echoed Mr Wilcox's message saying many of those who die in disasters are those unable to leave their beds or who can not comprehend the need to escape.
International Day for Disaster Reduction will be commemorated on October 13.