Emergency Relief Administrative and Training Facility Opening

Emergency Relief Administrative and Training Facility Opening
Ambassador Jean Manes
Tuesday, May 15, 2018, 10:00 A.M., Nejapa

Remarks by Ambassador Jean Manes at the Emergency Relief Administrative and Training Facility Opening

 

* This is a courtesy translation. Only the original Spanish language text should be considered authoritative. 

May 15, 2018

Natural disasters are a reminder that no matter how far we have come as civilizations and in our technological development, there are still forces in our world that we can not control. When the earth shakes, the wind blows with force or the storms fall, when mother nature ceases to seem maternal, we recognize that we must work to minimize the negative effects that threaten our communities or the country.

However there is much we can do to avoid that the consequences of these major forces, of these acts of God, which are devastating for our communities and for our most vulnerable populations. It is because of this that I can truly say it’s a joy to be here this morning inaugurating these modern facilities, because this center is part of the preventive measures that are essential to save lives during states of emergency.

To assist El Salvador in its efforts to develop better prevention capacity and reaction to all types of disasters, these facilities were equipped to serve as a refuge for the surrounding communities during an earthquake or other natural disaster. It is also the center that will coordinate the efforts on a national level deploying the equipment and supplies to where they are most needed according to the level of the emergency.

This donation of 1.7 million dollars is part of these preventive measures that will save lives in the future. It is a place to go during times when fear and anguish invade people. It is a place that has the capabilities, technology and strategic positioning to deploy emergency personnel in the most efficient and effective way.

These events always affect disproportionately the most vulnerable of our societies, the extremely poor and the overpopulated cities. We can see it now in Chirilagua and Intipucá where the most recent seismic swarm has affected the homes of many people, which puts them at risk, and an example of a very tangible situation where this center could be of great benefit.

When we talk about prevention, we talk about saving lives, about preventing these families who already live in very precarious conditions from becoming victims. That is why we are supporting these most affected municipalities through our agency for international development, USAID, in coordination with local authorities and the central government, to determine the most immediate needs to be resolved.

I want to take this moment to thank the important work of “Protección Civil” and recognize its commitment to all citizens by putting the needs of others first. You know better than anyone what it is to go through a natural disaster. It is a time of high tensions, uncertainty and fear, and the first seventy-two hours are crucial to save lives and prevent more tragedies.

For the government of the United States it is an honor to accompany you in this mission because the work of saving lives is one of the most noble to exist. We are proud to support you through this initiative, because in the end, every effort to save your compatriots or minimize the damage is an effort worth supporting.

 

* This is a courtesy translation. Only the original Spanish language text should be considered authoritative.