Appeal for increase in Canada’s assistance for typhoon Haiyan relief and rehabilitation

Community Opinion & Analysis Nov 22, 2013 at 5:59 pm

November 12, 2013
Prime Minister Stephen Harper
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington St.
Ottawa, ON  K1A 0A2

Dear Prime Minister Harper,

Re: Appeal  to the Canadian Government to increase the federal financial aid for typhoon Haiyan relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction
As the Canada Coordinating Committee of the International Coalition on Human Rights in the Philippines (ICHRP), we welcome the announcement of the Canadian Government that it will provide up to $5-million to assist with humanitarian aid in the communities in the Philippines affected by Typhoon Haiyan, and in addition, match the money donated by individual Canadians.

While the full extent of the devastation is not yet known, early reports reveal that the impact on affected communities is catastrophic. In addition to the tragic loss of life and displacement of entire communities, it is estimated that the damage could reach $14 billion.

The half million Canadians of Filipino descent along with other generous Canadians and Canadian organizations have responded quickly to mobilize resources to aid the affected communities. However, private funding from individuals and charitable organizations can scarcely meet the enormous resources required for relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction.

The UN has launched a flash appeal for $301 million for typhoon Haiyan emergency relief efforts to cover an initial period of six months.  In past emergencies of this magnitude, Canada has been among the major donors of assistance.   It gave $425 million to countries hit by the 2004 tsunami. Following the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, Canada immediately allocated $150.15 million for humanitarian and initial reconstruction efforts and another $400 million for the Haiti Action Plan.

We appeal to the Canadian Government to increase Canada’s direct financial aid for Typhoon Haiyan relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction, in addition to what it had already promised.

We ask that information about the assistance provided by the Canadian Government to the Philippine Government and non-government organizations be made public to ensure public accountability for the use of the funds.

Bern Jagunos
On behalf of the Canada Coordinating Committee – International Coalition on Human Rights in the Philippines; Email address: ; Mailing address:  c/o Bern Jagunos, 211 St. Patrick St., #702,Toronto, ON M5T 2Y9

Hon. Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development
Hon. John  Baird, Minister of Foreign Affairs
Ms. Helene Laverdierre, NDP critic, Int’l. Development and deputy critic, Foreign Affairs
Mr. Paul Dewar, NDP critic, Foreign Affairs
Mr. Wayne Marston, NDP critic, Int’l. Human Rights
Hon. Irwin Cotler, Liberal Party critic, Rights and Freedoms, International Justice
Mr. Marc Garneau, Liberal Party critic, Foreign Affairs and Int’l. Trade
Ms. Kristy Duncan, Liberal Party critic, Consular Affairs and Int’l Development
Mr. Tobias Enverga, Conservative Party Member of the Senate
Rev. Barry Naylor, Chair, Global Council of the International Coalition for Human  Rights in the Philippines