Canada Demonstrates Continued Commitment to Reconstruction and Security in Haiti

(No. 352 - November 4, 2010 - 4 p.m. ET) The Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today announced that the Government of Canada has contributed $9.5 million toward the construction of new headquarters for the Haitian National Police (HNP). In addition, the government has provided $1.3 million to St. John Ambulance for an instructor-training program on basic first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and disaster preparedness that will be made available to members of the HNP.

“With these projects, Canada is demonstrating its ongoing commitment to the people of Haiti and its determination to assist the Government of Haiti in the recovery, stabilization and reconstruction process,” said Minister Cannon during a Montreal press conference. “Stability and security serve as the foundation for Haiti’s long-term development and prosperity. There is still a great deal to be done, but we are making progress, and Canada will be at Haiti’s side every step of the way.”

The new headquarters will enable the HNP to deliver critical security services to the people of Haiti. The construction project will be implemented over two years by the Canadian Commercial Corporation.

The First Aid Instructor Training in Haiti (FAITH) program is designed to provide basic first aid and CPR training to HNP instructors, who will in turn train other members of the HNP. The program will also teach senior and middle HNP management vital skills in emergency preparedness to improve response to catastrophes. The FAITH program is being implemented by St. John Ambulance.

“I am proud of Canada’s continued efforts, contributions and cooperation in helping restore security and democratic institutions during this pivotal time for the people of Haiti,” said the Honourable Vic Toews, Minister of Public Safety.

“The Government of Quebec intends to continue its deployment of Quebec’s public expertise to Haiti in key sectors in collaboration with the Government of Canada,” said Monique Gagnon-Tremblay, Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie.

The projects announced today will be funded by the Global Peace and Security Fund, which is managed by the Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force (START).

For more information, please visit Canada-Haiti: Hand in Hand for a Better Future.

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A backgrounder follows.

For further information, media representatives may contact:

Jacques Labrie
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs
613-995-1851

Foreign Affairs Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
613-995-1874

Backgrounder - Canada’s Continuing Contribution in Haiti

Haitian National Police

The Haitian National Police (HNP) is the primary first-responder organization throughout Haiti and, since 1995, has been responsible for providing all security and emergency services, including ambulance, border protection, firefighting, police, prison and coast guard services.

Construction of Haitian National Police Headquarters Project

The HNP had significantly improved its effectiveness since 2006, although most of this progress was lost when the January 12, 2010, earthquake struck Haiti.

A total of 77 HNP officers and four administration staff died in the earthquake. In addition, a large proportion of HNP infrastructure and equipment was damaged or destroyed, further limiting the HNP’s ability to carry out its mandate.

The new headquarters will enable the HNP to coordinate police activities throughout Haiti and deliver critical security services to the people of Haiti to help deter violence, smuggling and human trafficking.

First Aid Instruction Training in Haiti (FAITH) Program

This initiative in first aid and emergency preparedness will include formal training supported by educational materials and training supplies. St. John Ambulance will train instructors and instructor trainers within the HNP.

The goal of this project is to train 7,000 HNP officers in basic first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation and 400 HNP management officers in emergency preparedness.

Global Peace and Security Fund

The Global Peace and Security Fund is managed by Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada’s Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force (START). The Fund supports three programs: the Global Peace and Security Program, the Global Peace Operations Program and the Glyn Berry Program.

The objective of the Fund is to provide financial and operational resources to facilitate timely, effective and accountable conflict prevention, crisis response, peace operations, civilian protection and stabilization interventions in fragile states. Haiti is a priority country for funding from the Fund.

Canadian Commercial Corporation

The Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) is a Crown corporation, and it acts as Canada’s international contracting and procurement agency. CCC was established in 1946, and, since 1978, it has been operating within the international trade portfolio of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada.

For more information, please visit Canadian Commercial Corporation.

St. John Ambulance

St. John Ambulance was established in Canada in 1883. The organization provides first aid and CPR training programs using the latest protocols. As a member of the Order of St. John—one of the oldest humanitarian organizations in the world—St. John Ambulance supports relief efforts across Canada and around the world.

For more information, please visit St. John Ambulance.