Inclusion Research Institute (IRI) and the Inclusive Preparedness Center (IPC) is a non-profit organization based in Washington DC which conducts research and projects that support full inclusion for people with disabilities in all aspects of life. Our CEO and founder, Carl T. Cameron, PhD, was trained as a special education teacher and our company includes staff members with various disability backgrounds and expertise, including several staff who have disabilities or are family members of persons with disabilities.
Established in 1986, IRI has been funded by Federal and State agencies to work with State and local agencies and private organizations in fields of employment, education, emergency preparedness, voting access, senior services, workforce development, and other areas. IRI provides training, technical assistance, and online or print materials to intermediary organizations to improve their services to clients and to enhance their own viability and effectiveness. IRI also conducts research, either alone or in collaboration with a university, on critical problems experienced by people with disabilities or other vulnerable populations. Research has been completed in many areas, including healthcare access, workforce development, transportation, voting, education, and emergency preparedness. IRI also conducts evaluations of programs designed to deliver services to people with disabilities or other specified populations (such as domestic abuse victims, K-12 students, and users of HUD services).
Central to the mission of IRI is the Inclusive Preparedness Center (IPC), with a focus on the full inclusion of all people in disaster readiness, response, and recovery planning and practices. IPC works with Federal and State agencies, private providers of services to vulnerable people, disability advocacy organizations, emergency response and planning agencies, and other groups committed to improving the disaster readiness of people with heightened vulnerability to the effects of disasters.
Established in 1996, IPC has received funding from Federal agencies such as the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Health and Human Services, and others. IPC has worked extensively in the National Capital Region, the District of Columbia, and the State of Maryland on disaster readiness projects for State agencies serving people with developmental disabilities, seniors, and other vulnerable groups.
Building on its Disaster Readiness work, IPC is now funded through FEMA’s Assistance to Firefighters Grants Program to develop versions of its readiness approach and materials focused on residential fire safety planning and practice for hard to reach populations at higher risk of home fires. These include people with disabilities, aging adults, very low income families, and large families with small children. In the first year of the project, IPC filled requests from Fire Life Safety Educators in 30 states for 100,000 sets of our innovative preparedness materials, and delivered 15 trainings nationally at meetings and conventions of fire fighters, burn unit personnel from Children’s hospitals, and Head Start parents and educators, among others. In the current year of the project 200,000 sets of materials will be distributed nationally, including all 50 states.
IPC provides training, technical assistance, and planning materials to public, private, and community-based organizations who serve individuals with functional and access needs, to improve their ability to continue operating during a disaster and to recover as fully and quickly as possible. IPC has also developed planning approaches and materials for such organizations to increase the disaster readiness of the people the organization serves and the staff and volunteers of the organization. IPC has extensive experience in designing, conducting, and evaluating tabletop, functional, and other exercises for State agencies, service provider organizations, and emergency planners and responders.