Navigating the Post-Disaster Environment: Reviewed National Principles for Disaster Recovery

The 2018 Australian and New Zealand Disaster and Emergency Management Conference is on next week over the 21-22 May at The Star Gold Coast.

Ms Mariela Diaz

Ms Mariela Diaz, Director, Emergency Management Branch & Chair with the Department Of Health And Human Services & Social Recovery Reference Group (SRRG) joins us at the Conference to discuss ‘Navigating the Post-Disaster Environment: Reviewed National Principles for Disaster Recovery’.


The complexity of many agencies working with communities post-disaster requires an approach that enables all partners to navigate the changed terrain. The National Principles for Disaster Recovery (‘The Principles’) are intended to create a set of fundamental underlying ‘truths’ that form the foundation of our knowledge and values and guide our action or practice in this space. The Principles hold an important place in disaster recovery in Australia, as recognised at the national level in Australia. They were originally intended for use by government workers involved in providing recovery planning and services. In 2017 they were reviewed with over 80 agency stakeholders along with the input of two communities who had experienced a disaster and recovery.

It was clear during the review that there is an appetite for the Principles to be utilised more broadly than government workers and other agencies. The language of the Principles has been adjusted to reflect this along with incorporation of other contemporary recovery challenges, including the “Use Community-led approaches” principle. The changes reflect modernised language, an attempt to move from ‘government speak’ and a greater emphasis on resilience and pre-event planning. The Principles were validated as relevant and of great utility to those engaged in the recovery sector. This presentation will introduce this new updated version of the Principles.


Mariela leads a multidisciplinary team who provide advice to Ministers and Secretaries, and support to the State Health Co-ordinator, the Chief Health Officer and the State Recovery Coordinator. She is Senior Liaison Officer at the State Control Centre as the Senior Liaison Officer. The Department of Health and Human Services provide key services to communities prone to, or impacted by disasters, both directly and with partners. These services include Control of Health Emergencies, Health Protection, and Health Coordination (health and aged care), Relief, Recovery in the social space, and Recovery Coordination across the social, economic, built and natural domains.

For more information on the 2018 Australian and New Zealand Disaster and Emergency Management Conference and to secure your spot, visit the conference website.