Haiti Task Force

Posted by Janice L. Jacobs
January 16, 2010

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.



January 19, 2010

DSM in Iraq writes:

How is CRC/A from S/CRS being deployed in this situation? Now is the time to put to practice our efforts to stand up this crucial component. "Post-Conflict" should not equate to "after kinetic (military) operations". This humanitarian disaster requires a whole-of-government effort that takes into account stabilization and reconstruction teams in 1) security, 2) political, 3) governance, 4) infrastructure, 5) economic development and more. This is what we bring to the table.

Our sending 10,000 military troops to Haiti may prove to be a double-edged sword. Rather than quell, we may get caught up in the Haitian people's internal civil unrest. Then we're right back to "post-conflict" as currently defined. Nobody wants that.

Consider how many Haitian expatriates currently live in the U.S. are frustrated at their sense of helplessness during this situation? How many of them have the necessary skills to provide security and humanitarian relief to their own people? We can facilitate this.

In the immediate-term - S/CRS CRC/A working hand in hand with USAID is an option. Recall everyone with the requisite skills and re-deploy them to where assistance is needed most.

Donald M.
Virginia, USA
January 19, 2010

Donald M. in Virginia writes:

1 16 10

The United States Government should consider this idea that would help support emergencies anywhere in the world.

The USS Enterprise Aircraft Carrier was the fastest carrier in our fleet, with the 8 boilers onboard, this vessel could make a rooster tail. Simply, convert this carrier into a FEMA based ship. Carrying all the emergency equipment, supplies, generators, tents, radar packaged up, convert beds for medical onboard, ability to make fresh water, have Military units and rescue SAR teams attached, including Air/Land/Sea. Then when or if an emergency strikes like an Earthquake happens, Hurricanes, Floods, this ship would be first to be activated and sent to the port around the country or world. Include fire trucks, ambulances, parametics, doctors, fire fighters, all the equipment needed to fight any type of emergency known. Pack this ship with all emergency supplies, to handle anything. Nobody knows when the next Earthquake, Hurricane, Flood, or disaster will happen, but its always good to be prepared. This ship could do it...


John P.
Missouri, USA
January 19, 2010

John R.P. in Missouri writes:

Included is my resume. I am will to go to Haiti to help with the management of demolition to help find people, and building temp and permanent structures for people to live and work out of. John P.

Isaiah D.
California, USA
January 18, 2010

Isaiah in California writes:

My name is Br. Isaiah, M.C. I am with the Missionaries of Charity Brothers,(founded by BLESSED MOTHER TERESA). We have a clinic in Port-au-Prince Nan Pele. The name of the clinic is LaKu LaPe. It is up and ready to run. There was no damage to the clinic. All 9 Brothers are okay. They are up and ready to help. The know medical assistance but they are nearing the end of supplies. If you could medical supplies to the they are more than ready to do stiching, dressing, medicine. We have a huge shelter with beds.


Br. Isaiah, M.C.

Massachusetts, USA
January 17, 2010

Stacy in Massachusetts writes:

Thanks for the updates. I am wondering though, I haven't seen dipnote updates on twitter today (Saturday) and yet with so much going on- is no one Tweeting today?

DipNote Bloggers write:

@ Stacy -- Thank you for following us on DipNote and Twitter. In case you missed Saturday's tweets, you can find them at http://twitter.com/Dipnote

Sandra H.
Kentucky, USA
January 17, 2010

Sandra H. in Kentucky writes:

To feed the people, have them form three lines. Women with children in one, then women in another, then men in the third. Local people with bull horns should tell the people of the plan. Use rope to separate the lines.Set up sites in various parts of the city.

robert n.
New York, USA
January 17, 2010

Robert N. in New York writes:

i am on parole but can get permission to go to haiti.i want to help with finding people in rubble. i have experience in demolition that is the only way i can help

Deborah C.
Oklahoma, USA
January 18, 2010

Deborah C. in Oklahoma writes:

I'm just wondering why they have not deployed the Seabee's out of Gulfport to build a rapid runway somewhere in the country of Haiti? I mean, they have all those fields, a group of well motivated Seabee's could knock that out in 3-5 days. Then you could have multiple staging areas, as well as field hospitals. Much better.

SW1, retired

kevin j.
New York, USA
January 18, 2010

Kevin J. in New York writes:

I would like to go and help with the rebuilding with haiti and thevschools and the structure of the country.

Juan S.
Florida, USA
January 19, 2010

Juan J.M.S. in Florida writes:

I am a licensed construction professional in the State of Florida, with 34 years experience in all types of infrastructure construction [engineering], and commercial and residential construction. Experienced in the field, in clearing, demolition, grading, drainage, water, sewer, concrete. My services are available to assist in Haiti with what is needed at this time, and I would like to assist in reconstructing the infrastructure as an employee for any government, entity, or company involved. I am fluent in two languages {spanish and english, with some capability of communicating in French/Creole} My credentials are available upon request by contacting my email
Thank You, and God Bless.


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