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Rep. Clarke’s Statement on the Cholera Outbreak in Haiti

In response to the recent cholera outbreak that has hit Haiti Congresswoman Clarke released the following statement:

“I am deeply saddened and concerned by the outbreak of Cholera that is spreading across the island nation of Haiti. This outbreak, absent from Haiti for over 50 years, returned this weekend sending 3,100 people to the hospital, killing over 250. While the outbreak has been contained to the central regions of Artibonite and Central Plateau, health officials warn of the strong possibility that the disease will spreads to Port-au-Prince. Hundreds of thousands of Haitians displaced by the earthquake live in internally displaced person (IDP) camps within the Capital. The dilapidated conditions in these camps provide the ideal environment for this outbreak to spread rapidly, causing thousands more to perish.

“It is shameful that over 9 months after the earthquake, very little progress has been made in the recovery efforts. Our Haitian brother and sisters have been living in these tent cities, constantly exposed to the threat of another natural disaster, disease and other maladies. The bureaucratic backlogs, lack of efficiency and compassion fatigue, on all levels, have stymied the progress these people so importantly deserve. We need more permanent housing immediately. This is sincerely a matter of life and death.

“As representative of one of the nation’s largest populations of Haitian-Americans, I am calling on all parties involved in this effort to uphold their promises, and get these people vital necessities that will adequately provide for them until we reach full recovery. Haiti’s recovery will not happen unless we garner the full commitment of all those who have pledged their unilateral support for the nation.”