NYSFDA Family Assistance Commission Helps Families After Disaster

FAC

The New York State Funeral Directors Association’s (NYSFDA) Family Assistance Commission (FAC) is comprised of a group of trained, licensed funeral directors from across the state who stand ready to assist New York State’s local governments in the event of a disaster occurring within their borders.

After such a disaster, FAC members – located in all areas of the State – would use their skills to interview survivors/next-of-kin and process paperwork to assist in identifying and facilitating the release of remains to the next-of-kin or other representatives. FAC members have been chosen based on their broad experience working with families throughout the United States after a disaster has occurred resulting in mass fatalities.  FAC operates under the auspices of the New York State Tribute Foundation, which is the non-profit charitable arm of NYSFDA.  The Foundation will provide insurance and liability coverage to all FAC members while activated and while travelling to and from the site where their services are rendered.

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Family Assistance Commission Leaders Present at Statewide Emergency Conference

Developed in 2007, NYSFDA’s Family Assistance Commission (FAC) is comprised of trained, licensed funeral directors from across NYS who stand ready to assist counties and local governments should a mass  fatality disaster occur within their borders.

In February 2013, FAC and NYSFDA Disaster Committee leaders Doug Brueggemann (Chair), Ed Mockler, and Joe Noll made a formal presentation at the annual NYS Emergency Management Association (NYSEMA) Winter Conference in Syracuse. More than one hundred emergency managers from across the state had the opportunity to learn about the FAC and the services our team can provide when a disaster causes more fatalities than the county or municipality – along with the coroner/medical examiner – can handle.  FAC also maintained an information booth and served as a sponsor of the conference.

 

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Family Assistance Commission - Memorandum of Understanding

NYS CountiesThe New York State Funeral Directors Association’s (NYSFDA) Family Assistance Commission (FAC) is comprised of a group of trained, licensed funeral directors from across the state who stand ready to assist New York State’s local governments in the event of a disaster occurring within their borders.

When a small or medium-scale mass fatality disaster occurs, FAC members – located in all areas of the State – would use their skills to interview survivors/next-of-kin and process paperwork to assist in identifying and facilitating the release of remains to the next-of-kin or other representatives. FAC members have been chosen based on their broad experience working with families throughout the United States after a disaster has occurred resulting in mass fatalities.  The FAC operates under the auspices of NYSFDA’s Tribute Foundation, which is the non-profit charitable arm of NYSFDA.  The Foundation will provide insurance and liability protection to all FAC members while activated and while travelling to and from the local site where their services are rendered. Their cost of lodging, if necessary, is also covered by the Foundation. There is no cost whatsoever to the municipality for using the services and expertise of the FAC.

The FAC’s specific operating guidelines are contained in a basic “Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) operating document that would jointly be agreed-upon and signed by both the FAC and a supervising county official just prior to the FAC providing its services.  We invite you to review this MOU.  CLICK HERE to view.

It is a fact that, given their professional backgrounds and profound understanding of the sensitivities involved in working with families who have just suffered the loss of a family member or other loved one, funeral directors are the most qualified group of individuals equipped to help families and other survivors work through these very difficult, yet necessary, processes, especially if the loss is sudden due to unexpected events like an accident or disaster.  FAC members are prepared to work in tandem with those coordinating disaster response efforts and all other participants to ensure that providing these vital services during a time of extreme confusion and grief proceed as smoothly as possible.

For more information, or to enlist the services of the NYSFDA Family Assistance Commission, please contact Marianne Reid, Director, Family Assistance Commission at 800-291-2629 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This.

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