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Emergency preparedness of veterans and nonveterans

Joseph F. Geiger III, BS

Abstract


This study examined statistical differences in levels of disaster preparedness between former members of the US Armed Forces (veterans) and civilians (nonveterans). It was hypothesized that veterans would exhibit a higher degree of disaster preparedness as compared to their nonveteran counterparts as a consequence of their training and life experience. Furthermore, if this were proven to be valid, the finding would identify this cohort as an ideal target audience for emergency and disaster preparedness education efforts. A four-page survey consisting principally of closed-ended questions about emergency preparedness was written to measure these differences. Most of the questions required respondents to rank their answers according to a five-step Likert Scale. The survey could be completed either in hard copy or online from September 2014 to January 2015. Ultimately, 113 surveys were returned for evaluation. Of those respondents, 62 were veterans and 51 were nonveterans. The responses were analyzed using one-way analysis of variance tests for statistical significance using the 95 percent confidence standard for each tested value. The results support that veterans are more prepared for domestic emergencies than nonveterans. In addition, veterans were more willing to provide leadership and direction to others in an effort to assist emergency managers in responding to domestic disasters. It is for these reasons that emergency managers should consider targeting veterans for disaster preparedness training to help ensure effective and efficient responses to emergencies.


Keywords


disasters, veterans, preparedness

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References


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5055/jem.2016.0297

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