On August 29, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson asked all Americans to keep those in Texas who have been affected by Hurricane Harvey in their prayers. “I think the state of Texas is doing a remarkable, remarkable job dealing with what is an extraordinarily difficult situation of historic proportions. As you know, the President is on his way down today. I think he has plans to go back a second time, I think, indicating the seriousness of the situation, but also the commitment of the federal government to provide all the assets that the state of Texas needs to respond to what’s going to be a very, very, very long rebuilding process,” he said.
Here are a few things you should know if you are in Texas and have been impacted by this storm or if you are looking for ways to help those who have been affected by this disaster:
Due to the inclement weather, the Houston Passport Agency is closed
through Friday, September 1, 2017. If you have an appointment at this agency today and have not been contacted to reschedule, please call 1-877-487-2778 or 1-888-874-7793 (TDD/TTY).
If you have an immediate need for medical attention or evacuation assistance please dial 911. Another option is to place a call to one of five numbers for the Houston Command Center of the United States Coast Guard, which can be found here. Safety tips can be found here: hurricanes, flooding, tornadoes. Also in Spanish.
This is still a dangerous storm; residents and visitors in areas potentially affected by the severe weather should listen to local officials, and continue to monitor local radio or TV stations for updated emergency information. Follow all instructions from your state and local emergency management agencies, and follow evacuation orders.
The compassion and generosity of the American people and our friends around the world is never more evident than during and after a disaster. It is individuals, non-profits, faith- and community-based organizations, private sector partners, and governmental agencies working together that will most effectively and efficiently help survivors cope with the impacts of Tropical Storm Harvey. The most effective way to support disaster survivors in their recovery is to donate money and time to trusted, reputable, voluntary or charitable organizations.
Individuals, corporations, and volunteers, can learn more about how to help on the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD) website.
For access to disaster assistance and resources, visit www.disasterassistance.gov.
Editor's Note: This entry also appears in the U.S. Department of State's publication on Medium.com.