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Guidelines on Notifying Families of Dead or Missing Loved Ones

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This tip sheet explains how families are typically notified after a disaster that their relatives are missing or deceased, and it emphasizes the importance of working with local authorities on notification of families in a sensitive, appropriate way. It offers do’s and don’ts for disaster responders helping local and national authorities make families aware that their relatives are missing or dead following a disaster.
Authoring Agency
Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress (CSTS)
Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS)