Harriet Harman

Member of Parliament for Camberwell and Peckham. Mother of the House of Commons.

First anniversary of the devastating Haiti earthquake 12/01/11

Today we remember the hundreds of thousands of people who died in the Haiti earthquake, the thousands more who died from the subsequent cholera epidemic and the many more who lost their homes and livelihoods.

One year on, over a million people are still living in hellish conditions in camps without a guarantee of the things they should be able to take for granted – water, basic sanitation and a permanent roof above their heads and women and girls live in fear of rape and sexual violence.

I am proud of the UK’s efforts to help the people of Haiti. In government Labour provided millions of pounds in emergency relief after the earthquake hit and I am glad the new government is continuing those efforts. But it is not only governments who have responded. Members of the public have donated millions of pounds, clothing and their support helped to send emergency teams. I praise their generosity - the UK government must work to ensure that money gets to those who need it most.

Haiti was already one of the poorest countries in the world and rebuilding it after this earthquake will take many years. The International community must be there for the long term, supporting the Haitian government to rebuild their country and ensuring that the people of Haiti are not forgotten.

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