Congress to Clinton, Nepalitano and Shah – Protect the Children

21 01 2010

Moments ago, 50 Members of Congress published a letter requesting aid and security to Haitian children being adopted by U.S. families and to all orphans.  The letter states that the approval of humanitarian aid is only a first step in helping the children.  The full letter can be found here.

Thanks again to those Members of Congress who care enough to use their considerable influence to provide critically needed assistance to the children of Haiti.





US Appoints Orphan Task Force

21 01 2010

Michele Bond, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Overseas Citizen Services, was appointed as head of a new Orphan Task Force.  Following is the announcement and Q & A.  the sections in blue text are those related to orphan children.

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE

January 20, 2010

SECRETARY CLINTON: Good afternoon, everyone, and Michele and Sharon, Lauren.  I’m joined today with three of our extraordinary public servants from the federal government who you will hear from in a minute, and I will introduce them.

But first, I want to give you a brief update on developments in Haiti.  Today we are closely monitoring the impact of the significant aftershock – it was above 6 on the Richter scale – that struck Port-au-Prince this morning, and we are assessing potential damage from it.

In better news, we saw the arrival of the USNS Comfort, a hospital ship with more than 600 medical personnel, that adds important capacity to our relief efforts.  Already, patients are being taken on board via helicopter, and treated.  The Comfort adds to what is one of the largest international rescue and relief efforts in history.  Food, water, medical supplies, and other essential aid continue to flow into the country.  And relief workers are operating around the clock to deliver more aid more quickly to more people.  There are significant challenges – devastated infrastructure, limited transportation options, security concerns – but we are making real progress every day.

One area we are urgently focused on is the plight of Haitian orphans, and I am pleased to have with us today Michele Bond from the State Department, who is heading up our efforts on this issue; Sharon Parrott, who represents Secretary Sebelius from the Department of Health and Human Services; and Lauren Kielsmeier from the Department of Homeland Security, working with Secretary Napolitano.  These three dedicated public servants, along with all whom they work with, are leading our efforts on behalf of the children who were orphaned before this earthquake, because children are especially vulnerable in any disaster, especially those without parents or other guardians to look after them.  This devastating earthquake has left many in need of assistance, and their welfare is of paramount concern as we move forward with our rescue and relief efforts. Read the rest of this entry »








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