19 october 2016
By: United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction – Regional Office for the Americas and the Caribbean.
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, February 12, 2019 – Haiti is at a turning point in its strategic engagement for disaster risk reduction (DRR). The country is preparing to adopt a Revised National Plan for Disaster and Risk Management, 20 years after the first one was adopted. In addition, a law is in discussion to provide more capacity and autonomy to the Directorate for Civil Protection (DPC). At the same time, Haiti is aiming to embrace several initiatives at regional and global level and to participate in the main international events in DRR where it will have to show the progress achieved while continue on drawing attention on existing vulnerabilities. Recognizing this critical stage, the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction is increasing its support to the Government and other stakeholders involved in reducing risk and building resilience in the country.
From January 29th to 31st, Mr. Raúl Salazar, Chief of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction for the Americas and the Caribbean, led a mission in Haiti where he met with the key stakeholders from the government, UN agencies, and Private Sector to identify synergy points and join together advocacy efforts. During this visit Mr. Salazar met the Director of Civil Protection, Dr. Jerry Chandler, who reported on the new law on DRR as well as the revised National Plan for Disaster and Risk Management. They also agreed on the importance of ensuring a substantial participation of Haiti to the sixth session of the Global Platform for DRR, which will take place in Geneva, in May 2019. On a meeting with the Swiss Cooperation, it was agreed to support the DPC in the selection of materials and good practices to share at the Global Platform on DRR.
In line with the recommendations of Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 promoting strong Public-Private Partnerships, including risk-informed investments to enhance the resilience of communities, the Delegation of the UN office for Disaster Risk Reduction met with AGERCA, a platform of private enterprises involved in risk prevention and disaster response in Haiti. As a result of the collaboration between those two institutions, Haiti is planning to launch by the end of March 2019, the National ARISE Network of Haiti, a private sector initiative that seeks to reduce risks through better decision making, informed by the risk related to preparedness, response and recovery following a disaster.
In addition to the meetings held with the World Food Programme (WFP) and the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the Delegation met with Dr. Mamadou Diallo, Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General of the United Nations in Haiti and Officer-in-Charge of the United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti (MINUJUSTH).
Before leaving Haiti, the delegation of the UN Office for DRR met with the local office of European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO), its main donor in Haiti this year, where Mr. Salazar exposed the findings of the mission and next steps identified.
The mission and project achievements were possible thanks to the financial support of ECHO.