About the Author: Janice L. Jacobs serves as Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs.
As President Obama and Secretary Clinton have said, we are committed to a swift and coordinated response, and are working as actively as we possibly can under these extremely challenging circumstances. Our mission is to serve our fellow citizens during their most important moments — births, deaths, disasters, arrests and medical emergencies to name a few. The Bureau of Consular Affairs carries out the Department’s most important mandate – protecting and assisting Americans abroad.
Our U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince has activated its early warning system to communicate with approximately 45,000 U.S. citizens who are in Haiti. Here in Washington, D.C., the Haiti Task Force is working around the clock to answer your phone call and e-mail inquiries. We know that many of you here in the United States are trying to reach your loved ones in Haiti by calling us at 1-888-407-4747, or 1-202-501-4444 if outside the U.S. and Canada. In an effort to assist every American citizen in this moment of need, the Department has also established an e-mail address and a web-based People Finder tool for individuals who are trying to contact friends and relatives in Haiti. Please send your inquiries to Haiti-Earthquake@state.gov and include the following information:
• Name(s) of the American citizen(s) in Haiti on the subject line of the email.
• The body of the email should also include the full name, date of birth, and passport information (if known) of the persons in Haiti you are trying to contact. In addition, please include a telephone number, email address, hotel name, or local Haiti address (if known).
• Relationship and contact information for the next of kin in the United States (parent, spouse, friend, etc.).
• Please mention any special needs or urgent circumstances.
Our task force is working with our Embassy staff in Haiti to locate and provide assistance. Consular officers will respond to messages as soon as possible. If you hear from the person you are concerned about, please be sure to send us an e-mail providing the updated information about their location and/or condition. Once you have sent a message, please be assured that we are doing all that we can. Please do not send additional messages unless you have follow-up information. We will respond to your message as soon as we are able.
If you know someone who may have language barriers or limited access to e-mail or phone, we encourage you to gather the above information from them and contact us on their behalf. We will continue to update www.travel.state.gov with our most recent information on Haiti, so please check back often.
U.S. citizens in Haiti can call the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince’s Consular Task Force at 509-2229-8942, 509-2229-8089, 509-2229-8322, or 509-2229-8672, or e-mail ACSPaP@state.gov to request assistance.