IEMA Releases New Broadcast Campaign Focusing on Functional Needs Emergency Preparedness

TV, Radio Spots Feature Sports Announcer Jason Benetti 
SPRINGFIELD – Personal preparedness for emergencies is important for everyone, particularly households with members who have disabilities, functional needs or may need assistance during an emergency. The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) recently launched a new broadcast campaign to encourage people and caregivers to develop plans and assemble emergency supply kits to help them stay safe and well when disaster strikes.

The new TV and radio spots feature White Sox announcer Jason Benetti.

“These radio and TV spots are an exciting addition to our Ready Illinois preparedness campaign,” said IEMA Acting Director William P. Robertson. “Emergency preparedness is important for everyone, especially people with a disability or functional need. We appreciate Jason’s willingness to support our efforts to help people be better prepared for the unexpected.”

The spots direct listeners to the Ready Illinois website (​) for information on developing an emergency plan and building an emergency supply kit for people with cognitive, mobility or visual disabilities, those with mental health or substance abuse issues, people who are deaf or have hearing loss, seniors, people with service animals, and those who use life support systems.

“I'm glad to be able to assist in the creation of this campaign,” Benetti said. “Making sure every American is well-informed in case of emergency is an extremely worthy undertaking. The Illinois Broadcasters Association and IEMA deserve a great deal of credit for this initiative.”

The new spots are airing as part of the Ready Illinois broadcast preparedness campaign, which is aired in cooperation with the Illinois Broadcasters Association (IBA) Public Education Partnership (PEP) program. The spots will air on more than 200 Illinois radio stations and more than 30 Illinois TV stations. 

“We greatly appreciate Jason’s personal support for this latest IEMA radio and TV campaign and the support of IBA-member WGN-TV in producing this latest PEP campaign for IEMA,” said IBA President and CEO Dennis Lyle. “We applaud IEMA for once again allowing the important message of emergency preparedness to be presented in such a creative manner.”

IEMA’s partnership with the IBA’s PEP program have included radio campaigns recorded by actress Marion Ross of TV’s “Happy Days” fame; TV and radio personality Steve Harvey; the late Larry Lujack and now retired radio sidekick Tommy Edwards (reprising their roles as “Uncle Lar’ and Li’l Tommy” from the WLS ‘Animal Stories’ vignettes); Alan Kalter, formerly of “The Late Show with David Letterman;” and TV spots written and/or produced by Illinois high school and college students.  

All of the preparedness radio and TV ads can be found on the Ready Illinois website (