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The U.S. Military Response to the 2010 Haiti Earthquake: Considerations for Army Leaders

October 30, 2013 Comments off

The U.S. Military Response to the 2010 Haiti Earthquake: Considerations for Army Leaders
Source: RAND Corporation

The earthquake that struck Haiti in 2010 collapsed 100,000 structures, damaged 200,000 more, killed more than 316,000 people, injured 300,000 others, and displaced more than 1 million people. It virtually decapitated the Haitian government, destroying the presidential palace and 14 of 16 government ministries and claiming the lives of numerous government officials and employees and the head of the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti and his principal deputy. Shortly after the earthquake, surviving Haitian government officials made an urgent request for U.S. assistance. In reply, President Barack Obama promised U.S. support, directing a whole-of-government response led by the U.S. Agency for International Development with significant support from the U.S. Department of Defense through U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM). Selected U.S. military elements began mobilizing immediately, and SOUTHCOM established Joint Task Force-Haiti (JTF-Haiti) to provide U.S. military support to the international response and relief effort through Operation Unified Response (OUR). U.S. Army forces constituted a principal component of JTF-Haiti. Researchers assessed the effectiveness of JTF-Haiti, with the goal of informing the U.S. Army on how to best prepare for and support future humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HA/DR) operations. This report examines how JTF-Haiti supported the HA/DR effort in Haiti. It focuses on how JTF-Haiti was organized, how it conducted OUR, and how the Army supported that effort. The analysis includes a review of existing authorities and organizations and explains how JTF-Haiti fit into the U.S. whole-of-government approach, as well as the international response.

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New From the GAO

October 17, 2013 Comments off

New GAO Reports and Testimony
Source: Government Accountability Office

Reports

1. Managing Critical Isotopes: Stewardship of Lithium-7 Is Needed to Ensure a Stable Supply. GAO-13-716, September 19.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-13-716
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/657965.pdf

2. Nuclear Power: Analysis of Regional Differences and Improved Access to Information Could Strengthen NRC Oversight. GAO-13-743, September 27.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-13-743
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/658274.pdf

3. Medicare Information Technology: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Needs to Pursue a Solution for Removing Social Security Numbers from Cards. GAO-13-761, September 10.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-13-761
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/657710.pdf

4. Farm Programs: Changes Are Needed to Eligibility Requirements for Being Actively Involved in Farming. GAO-13-781, September 26.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-13-781
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/658209.pdf

Testimony

1. Haiti Reconstruction: USAID Infrastructure Projects Have Had Mixed Results and Face Sustainability Challenges, by David Gootnick, director, international affairs and trade, before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. GAO-14-47T, October 9.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-47T
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/658446.pdf

Press Release

1. GAO Executive Wins Service to America Medal, October 17.
http://www.gao.gov/press/service_to_america_award_2013oct17.htm

New From the GAO

June 25, 2013 Comments off

New GAO Reports and Testimony

Source: Government Accountability Office

Reports

1. Haiti Reconstruction: USAID Infrastructure Projects Have Had Mixed Results and Face Sustainability Challenges. GAO-13-558, June 18.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-13-558
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/655275.pdf

2. Antidumping and Countervailing Duties: Key Challenges to Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises’ Pursuit of the Imposition of Trade Remedies. GAO-13-575, June 25.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-13-575
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/655494.pdf

3. Video Marketplace: Competition Is Evolving, and Government Reporting Should Be Reevaluated. GAO-13-576, June 25.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-13-576
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/655477.pdf

Testimony

1. National Preparedness: FEMA Has Made Progress, but Additional Steps Are Needed to Improve Grant Management and Assess Capabilities, by David C. Maurer, director, homeland security and justice, before the Subcommittee on Emergency Management, Intergovernmental Relations, and the District of Columbia, Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs. GAO-13-637T, June 25.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-13-637T
Highlights – http://www.gao.gov/assets/660/655393.pdf

CRS — Haiti Under President Martelly: Current Conditions and Congressional Concerns

May 29, 2013 Comments off

Haiti Under President Martelly: Current Conditions and Congressional Concerns (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

Haiti shares the island of Hispaniola with the Dominican Republic. Since the fall of the Duvalier dictatorship in 1986, Haiti has struggled to overcome its centuries-long legacy of authoritarianism, extreme poverty, and underdevelopment. During that time, economic and social stability improved considerably, and many analysts believed Haiti was turning a corner toward sustainable development. Unfortunately, Haiti’s development was set back by a massive earthquake in January 2010 that devastated much of the capital of Port-au-Prince and other parts of the country. Poverty remains massive and deep, and economic disparity is wide: Haiti remains the poorest country in the western hemisphere.

Haiti is the Obama Administration’s top foreign assistance priority for Latin American and Caribbean countries. Haiti’s developmental needs and priorities are many. The Haitian government and the international donor community are implementing a 10-year recovery plan focusing on territorial, economic, social, and institutional rebuilding. An outbreak of cholera that began in late 2010 has swept across most of the country and further complicated assistance efforts. While some progress has been made in developing democratic institutions, they remain weak. In May 2011, following yet another controversial election, President René Préval was succeeded by Michel Martelly, a popular musician without any previous political experience. President Martelly’s difficulty in forming a government and political gridlock, especially the lengthy and contentious delays in beginning a long overdue elections process, are hampering reconstruction efforts and frustrating international donors. Some steps toward elections have been made, including naming an electoral council and passing a political parties law.

The United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) has been in Haiti to help restore order since the collapse of former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s government in 2004. It currently has 9,464 troops. The mission has helped facilitate elections, conducted campaigns to combat gangs and drug trafficking with the Haitian National Police, and played a key role in emergency responses to natural disasters, especially after the earthquake. Nonetheless, popular protests have called for MINUSTAH’s withdrawal because of sexual abuse by some of its forces and scientific findings that its troops apparently introduced cholera to the country. In February 2013 the U.N. said it would not compensate cholera victims, citing diplomatic immunity.

The main priorities for U.S. policy regarding Haiti are to strengthen fragile democratic processes, continue to improve security, and promote econom ic development. Other concerns include the cost and effectiveness of U.S. aid; protecting human rights; combating narcotics, arms, and human trafficking; and alleviating poverty. The Obama Administration granted Temporary Protected Status to Haitians living in the United States at the time of the earthquake. Congressional concerns include the pace and effectiveness of reconstruction, respect for human rights, security issues, counternarcotics efforts and trade issues. Congress is also concerned that overdue Senate and local elections be scheduled quickly and be free, fair, and peaceful.

Current legislation related to Haiti includes P.L. 112-74, P.L. 111-171, P.L. 110-246 , P.L. 109- 432 , H.R. 651, H.R. 1525, H.R. 1749, H.Res. 31, H.Res. 61, and S.Res. 12.

New From the GAO

December 17, 2012 Comments off

CRS — Haiti Under President Martelly: Current Conditions and Congressional Concerns

July 3, 2012 Comments off

Haiti Under President Martelly: Current Conditions and Congressional Concerns (PDF)
Source: Congressional Research Service (via Federation of American Scientists)

Haiti shares the island of Hispaniola with the Dominican Republic. Since the fall of the Duvalier dictatorship in 1986, Haiti has struggled to overcome its centuries-long legacy of authoritarianism, extreme poverty, and underdevelopment. During that time, economic and social stability improved considerably, and many analysts believed Haiti was turning a corner toward sustainable development. Unfortunately, Haiti’s development was set back by a massive earthquake in January 2010 that devastated much of the capital of Port-au-Prince and other parts of the country. Poverty remains massive and deep, and economic disparity is wide: Haiti remains the poorest country in the western hemisphere.

Haiti is the Obama Administration’s top priority in the Latin America and Caribbean region. Haiti’s developmental needs and priorities are many. The Haitian government and the international donor community are implementing a 10-year recovery plan focusing on territorial, economic, social, and institutional rebuilding. An outbreak of cholera later in 2010 has swept across most of the country and further complicated assistance efforts after the earthquake. While some progress has been made in developing democratic institutions, they remain weak. Following yet another controversial, sometimes violent election process, Haiti saw its first peaceful, democratic transfer of power between presidents of opposing parties in May 2011.

Outgoing President Rene Préval handed the presidential sash to President Michel Martelly, a popular musician without any previous political experience. Martelly’s administration has been without a prime minister for most of his first year in office, hampering reconstruction efforts. The United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) has been in Haiti to help restore order since the collapse of former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s government in 2004.

MINUSTAH’s current strength is 10,773 troops. The Mission has helped facilitate elections, conducted campaigns to combat gangs and drug trafficking with the Haitian National Police, and played a key role in emergency responses to natural disasters, especially after the earthquake. Popular protests have called for MINUSTAH’s withdrawal because of allegations regarding its role in introducing cholera to the country and sexual abuse by some of its forces.

The main priorities for U.S. policy regarding Haiti are to strengthen fragile democratic processes, continue to improve security, and promote economic development. Other concerns include the cost and effectiveness of U.S. aid; protecting human rights; combating narcotics, arms, and human trafficking; and alleviating poverty. The Obama Administration granted Temporary Protected Status to Haitians living in the United States at the time of the earthquake.

Congressional concerns include the pace and effectiveness of reconstruction; respect for human rights, particularly for women; counternarcotics efforts; and security issues. Congress is also concerned that overdue Senate and local elections be scheduled and be free, fair, and peaceful. Current law related to Haiti includes P.L. 112-74, P.L. 111-171, P.L. 110-246, and P.L. 109-432. Pending legislation related to Haiti includes H.R. 1016/S. 1576, H.R. 3711, H.R. 3771, H.Res. 510, H.Res. 521/S.Res. 352, S. 1023, S.Res. 26, S.Res. 352, and S.Res. 368. For details see “Legislation in the 112 th Congress.”

New From the GAO

November 30, 2011 Comments off

New GAO Reports and Testimonies
Source: Government Accountability Office

+ Reports

1.  Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Program:  Additional Improvements to Fraud Prevention Controls Are Needed.  GAO-12-152R, October 26.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-152R

2.  Private Health Insurance:  Early Indicators Show that Most Insurers Would Have Met or Exceeded New Medical Loss Ratio Standards.  GAO-12-90R, October 31.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-90R

3.  Earned Import Allowance Program for Haiti.  GAO-12-204R, November 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-204R

4.  Medicare Advantage: Enrollment Increased from 2010 to 2011 while Premiums Decreased and Benefit Packages Were Stable.  GAO-12-93, October 31.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-93
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d1293high.pdf

5.  Mental Health and Substance Use:  Employers’ Insurance Coverage Maintained or Enhanced Since Parity Act, but Effect of Coverage on Enrollees Varied.  GAO-12-63, November 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-63
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d1263high.pdf

+ Testimonies

1.  Recovery Act:  Status of Science-Related Funding, by Frank Rusco, director, Natural Resources and Environment, before the Subcommittee on Investigations And Oversight, House Committee on Science, Space, And Technology .  GAO-12-279T, November 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-279T
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d12279thigh.pdf

2.  Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Program: Additional Improvements to Fraud Prevention Controls Are Needed, by Gregory D. Kutz, director, forensic audits and investigative service, before the Subcommittees on Economic Opportunity and Oversight and Investigations, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.  GAO-12-205T, November 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-205T

3.  Veterans Administration Procurement:  Protests Concerning Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Preferences Sustained, by Ralph O. White, managing associate general counsel, before the Subcommittees on Oversight And Investigation and Economic Opportunity, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.  GAO-12-278T, November 30
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-278T
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d12278thigh.pdf

4.  Compact of Free Association: Proposed U.S. Assistance to Palau for Fiscal Years 2011-2024, by David Gootnick, director, International Affairs and Trade, before the Subcommittee on Asia And The Pacific, House Committee on Foreign Affairs.  GAO-12-249T, November 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-249T
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d12249thigh.pdf

5.  Small Business Administration: Progress Continues in Addressing Reforms to the Disaster Loan Program, by William B. Shear, director, financial markets and community investment, before the House Committee on Small Business.  GAO-12-253T, November 30.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-253T
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d12253thigh.pdf

New From the GAO

November 17, 2011 Comments off

New GAO Reports and Testimonies
Source: Government Accountability Office

+ Reports

1. U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Border Security Fencing, Infrastructure and Technology Fiscal Year 2011 Expenditure Plan.  GAO-12-106R, November 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-106R

2. Persian Gulf: Implementation Gaps Limit the Effectiveness of End-Use Monitoring and Human Rights Vetting for U.S. Military Equipment.  GAO-12-89, November 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-89
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d1289high.pdf

3. U.S. Postal Service: Action Needed to Maximize Cost-Saving Potential of Alternatives to Post Offices.  GAO-12-100, November 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-100
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d12100high.pdf

4. VA Community Living Centers:  Actions Needed to Better Manage Risks to Veterans’ Quality of Life and Care.  GAO-12-11, October 19.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-11
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d1211high.pdf

5. Key Controls NASA Employs to Guide Use and Management of Funded Space Act Agreements Are Generally Sufficient, but Some Could Be Strengthened and Clarified.  GAO-12-230R, November 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-230R

6. Higher Education: Use of New Data Could Help Improve Oversight of Distance Education.  GAO-12-39, November 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-39
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d1239high.pdf

7. Haiti Reconstruction: Factors Contributing to Delays in USAID Infrastructure Construction.  GAO-12-68, November 16.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-68
Highlights - http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d1268high.pdf

+ Testimonies

1. DHS Research and Development: Science and Technology Directorate’s Test and Evaluation and Reorganization Efforts, by Dave C. Maurer, director, Homeland Security and Justice, before the  Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies, House Committee on Homeland Security. GAO-12-239T, November 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-239T

2. Environmental Protection Agency: Actions Needed to Improve Planning, Coordination, and Leadership of EPA Laboratories, by Dave C. Trimble, director, Natural Resources and Environment, before the Subcommittee on Energy and the Environment, House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology.  GAO-12-236T, November 17.
http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-12-236T

Country Specific Information: Haiti

September 4, 2011 Comments off

Country Specific Information: Haiti
Source: U.S Department of State

August 29, 2011

COUNTRY DESCRIPTION: Haiti covers the western third of the Caribbean island of Hispaniola. The capital city is Port-au-Prince. The January 12, 2010 earthquake significantly damaged key infrastructure and greatly reduced the capacity of Haiti’s medical facilities. Despite the passage of time, Haiti’s infrastructure remains in very poor condition, unable to support normal activity, much less crisis situations. Last year’s cholera outbreak – exacerbated by inadequate public sanitation – killed thousands of Haitians, further straining the capacity of medical facilities and personnel and undermining their ability to attend to emergencies. While the Embassy’s ability to provide emergency consular services has improved since the earthquake, it is still limited. The Haitian National Police (HNP), with assistance from UN Police (UN Pol), are responsible for keeping peace in Haiti and rendering assistance during times of civil unrest. The level of violent crime in Port-au-Prince, including murder and kidnapping, remains a concern and Haiti is considered a ‘critical threat’ post for crime. Read the Department of State’s Background Notes on Haiti for additional information.

Haiti: Earthquake Recovery Failing Women and Girls

September 1, 2011 Comments off

Haiti: Earthquake Recovery Failing Women and Girls
Source: Human Rights Watch

Women and girls in Haiti are facing gaps in access to available healthcare services necessary to stop preventable maternal and infant deaths, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Serious gaps in access to healthcare services are harming vulnerable women and girls still displaced after the January 12, 2010 earthquake. Aid efforts that lack effective mechanisms for monitoring and reporting shortcomings compound the problem.

The 78-page report, “‘Nobody Remembers Us’:Failure to Protect Women’s and Girls’ Right to Health and Security in Post-Earthquake Haiti,” documents the lack of access to reproductive and maternal care in post-earthquake Haiti, even with unprecedented availability of free healthcare services. The report also describes how hunger has led women to trade sex for food and how poor camp conditions exacerbate the impact of sexual violence because of difficulties accessing post-rape care. It looks at how recovery efforts have failed to adequately address the needs and rights of women and girls, particularly their rights to health and security. Haitian authorities and donors should take concrete steps to improve access to services and to protect the human rights of these women and girls, Human Rights Watch said.

+ Full Report (PDF)

State Department Travel Warning: Haiti

August 14, 2011 Comments off

State Department Travel Warning: Haiti
Source: U.S. Department of State

August 08, 2011

The Department of State has issued this Travel Warning to inform U.S. citizens traveling to or living in Haiti about the security situation in Haiti. This replaces the Travel Warning dated January 20, 2011 to consolidate and update information regarding the critical crime level, renewed cholera outbreak, lack of adequate infrastructure – particularly in medical facilities, seasonal severe inclement weather, and limited police protection.

The Department of State strongly urges U.S. citizens to consider carefully all travel to Haiti. Travel fully supported by organizations with solid infrastructure, evacuation options, and medical support systems in place is recommended and preferable to travel in country without such support structures in place. U.S. citizens traveling to Haiti without such support have found themselves in danger in the past.

U.S. citizens have been victims of violent crime, including murder and kidnapping, in Port-au-Prince. Some kidnapping victims have been physically abused, sexually assaulted, shot, and even killed. No one is safe from kidnapping, regardless of occupation, nationality, race, gender, or age. In a number of cases this past year, travelers arriving in Port-au-Prince on flights from the United States were attacked and robbed shortly after departing the airport. At least two U.S. citizens were shot and killed in such incidents. Haitian authorities have limited capacity to deter or investigate such violent acts, or prosecute perpetrators.

The Haitian National Police (HNP), with assistance from UN Police (UN Pol), are responsible for keeping peace in Haiti and rendering assistance during times of civil unrest. However, given the possibility and unpredictability of violent protests, the ability of HNP and UN Pol to come to the aid of U.S. citizens in distress during disturbances is very limited. The U.S. Embassy does not have the capacity or infrastructure to evacuate U.S. citizens and relies on the HNP to provide assistance. U.S. citizens in Haiti must therefore have well-prepared security plans, including a location to shelter in place stocked with provisions, and a private evacuation strategy given the possibility that violent disruptions could, as in the recent past, make it impossible for them to circulate freely.

The January 12, 2010 earthquake significantly damaged key infrastructure and greatly reduced the capacity of Haiti’s medical facilities. Despite the passage of time, Haiti’s infrastructure remains in very poor condition, unable to support normal activity, much less crisis situations. Medical facilities are particularly weak. Last year’s cholera outbreak – exacerbated by inadequate public sanitation – killed thousands of Haitians, further straining the capacity of medical facilities and personnel and undermining their ability to attend to emergencies. While no longer at peak levels, cholera persists in many areas of Haiti and the risk of contracting it remains. Some U.S. citizens injured in accidents and others with serious health concerns have been unable to find necessary medical care in Haiti and have had to arrange and pay for medical evacuation to the United States. The cost of these evacuations exceeds $15,000 USD, on average, and the U.S. Embassy does not have the assets to evacuate U.S. citizens or to pay for their evacuation.

Vaccination strategies for epidemic cholera in Haiti with implications for the developing world

May 22, 2011 Comments off

Vaccination strategies for epidemic cholera in Haiti with implications for the developing world
Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

In October 2010, a virulent South Asian strain of El Tor cholera began to spread in Haiti. Interventions have included treatment of cases and improved sanitation. Use of cholera vaccines would likely have further reduced morbidity and mortality, but such vaccines are in short supply and little is known about effective vaccination strategies for epidemic cholera. We use a mathematical cholera transmission model to assess different vaccination strategies. With limited vaccine quantities, concentrating vaccine in high-risk areas is always most efficient. We show that targeting one million doses of vaccine to areas with high exposure to Vibrio cholerae, enough for two doses for 5% of the population, would reduce the number of cases by 11%. The same strategy with enough vaccine for 30% of the population with modest hygienic improvement could reduce cases by 55% and save 3,320 lives. For epidemic cholera, we recommend a large mobile stockpile of enough vaccine to cover 30% of a country’s population to be reactively targeted to populations at high risk of exposure.

+ Full Paper (PDF)

New From the GAO

May 20, 2011 Comments off

New GAO Reports and Correspondence (PDFs)
Source: Government Accountability Office
20 May 2011

Reports

1. Haiti Reconstruction: U.S. Efforts Have Begun, Expanded Oversight Still to Be Implemented. GAO-11-415, May 19.  Highlights

2. Budget Issues: Better Fee Design Would Improve Federal Protective Service’s and Federal Agencies’ Planning and Budgeting for Security. GAO-11-492, May 20.  Highlights

3. Federal Land Management: Availability and Potential Reliability of Selected Data Elements at Five Agencies. GAO-11-377, April 20.  Highlights

Correspondence

1. Counter-Improvised Explosive Devices: Most Initiatives Supported by the Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization Have Limited Applicability to Humanitarian Demining. GAO-11-578R, May 20.

2. Defense Management: Perspectives on the Involvement of the Combatant Commands in the Development of Joint Requirements. GAO-11-527R, May 20.

Special Publication

1. Performance Measurement and Evaluation: Definitions and Relationships. GAO-11-646SP, May 2011

Improving Effective Surgical Delivery in Humanitarian Disasters: Lessons from Haiti

April 29, 2011 Comments off

Improving Effective Surgical Delivery in Humanitarian Disasters: Lessons from Haiti
Source: PLoS Medicine

The humanitarian response to major disasters is often marred by duplication and fragmentation, resulting in insufficient resources and services reaching the victims [1]. This is particularly critical when it comes to surgical care in mass disasters, both because the impact of surgical services on mortality requires a rapid response, and because surgical teams are often the most difficult to recruit.

In response to the 2010 Haiti earthquake, Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) deployed the largest surgical team in the organization’s 40-year history: in 10 weeks, over 55,000 patients were treated and over 4,000 surgical interventions performed. The overall combined response was perhaps one of the largest non-conflict humanitarian surgical efforts in human history. However, the delivery of care was fraught with supply delays, a lack of appropriately experienced surgeons and anesthesiologists, and challenges in coordinating with other agencies—governmental, military, and non-governmental—whose priorities and motives did not always agree. We highlight some challenges from this recent experience and propose some ways forward to support an effective surgical humanitarian response to future major disasters.

Country Specific Information: Haiti

April 17, 2011 Comments off

Country Specific Information: Haiti
Source: U.S. Department of State

Haiti is one of the least developed and least stable countries in the Western Hemisphere. The earthquake of January 12, 2010 caused significant damage to key infrastructure in and around Port-au-Prince and access to basic services throughout the country remains limited. In addition, the earthquake significantly reduced the capacity of Port-au-Prince’s medical facilities and inadequate public sanitation poses serious health risks. While the Embassy’s ability to provide emergency consular services has improved since the earthquake, it is still limited. The level of violent crime in Port-au-Prince, including murder and kidnapping, remains high and Haiti is considered a ‘critical threat’ post for crime. Read the Department of State’sBackground Notes on Haiti for additional information.

Fact Sheet — U.S. Foreign Assistance for the Western Hemisphere

March 22, 2011 Comments off

Fact Sheet — U.S. Foreign Assistance for the Western Hemisphere
Source: U.S. Department of State

The United States seeks to promote four interconnected and broadly-shared goals in the hemisphere: expanded economic and social opportunity; citizen safety for all peoples; effective, democratic governance and institutions; and a clean energy future for the hemisphere. U.S. foreign assistance is designed to further these goals, while it also leverages emerging economic opportunities and local strengths, and counters threats to citizen safety that jeopardize the democratic gains of the past decade. We also seek to support humanitarian needs in the hemisphere, including reconstruction in Haiti.

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