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2 November 2006

Barrett calls for focus on preparation for international disasters

John Barrett, Liberal Democrat MP for Edinburgh West, today called on the Government to better prepare for international disasters after a new report criticised the lack of funds committed by the international community to prepare for global catastrophes.

A major new report published today by the International Development Select Committee called for more focus on preparation for potential disasters rather than and raised concerns that there was a lack of political will to commit the necessary funds.

John Barrett, a member of the International Development Select Committee, said:

"In recent years we have seen more and more people hit by natural disasters and yet political decision makers are failing to make responsible preparations.

“New technology has massively improved our ability to accurately forecast ‘slow-onset disasters’, such as food crises. However, this has not been matched by the political will to deal with the problem and pre-empt humanitarian catastrophes.

“Lives saved by good planning before a disaster may not make such good television as people being pulled from rubble by rescue teams. However, spending money on preventative measures before a disaster is far more effective in terms of lives saved than picking up the pieces after the event.”

Notes

The Committee will be publishing its Report on Humanitarian response to natural disasters on Thursday 2 November 2006 at 00.01 a.m. as the Seventh Report from the Committee, Session 2005-06.

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This website was established while I was a Member of Parliament. The site content is being kept online as a source of information, but all forms / email have been disabled.