Social media for emergency messaging with youth and families during the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic: Getting it right




COVID-19, social media, emergency management, crisis communications


Disaster communications are frequently included as an area of improvement in the majority of incident after action reports. One segment of the population that is overlooked or intentionally excluded from messaging constructs is adolescents and transitional aged youth. Social media, the preferred mechanism of this population, has the capacity to both educate as well as misinform. Thoughtful and intentional utilization of social media channels for adolescent audiences can convey facts and motivation for appropriate community action when mindfully incorporated into a crisis communication plan by emergency managers. Increasing methods of accurately conveying life-safety issues during the COVID-19 pandemic and its increasing variants must be done correctly and timely.

Author Biographies

Heather M. Hilliard, MHA, MBA, CEM, CFM

Adjunct Instructor, George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Washington, DC

Martha J. Ignaszewski, MD, FRCPC

Department of Psychiatry, British Columbia Children’s Hospital, Vancouver General Hospital, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Kunmi Sobowale, MD

Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California

Linda Chokroverty, MD, FAAP

Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York


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How to Cite

Hilliard, MHA, MBA, CEM, CFM, H. M., M. J. Ignaszewski, MD, FRCPC, K. Sobowale, MD, and L. Chokroverty, MD, FAAP. “Social Media for Emergency Messaging With Youth and Families During the Coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) Pandemic: Getting It Right”. Journal of Emergency Management, vol. 19, no. 9, July 2021, pp. 109-16, doi:10.5055/jem.0597.