OTTAWA, October 26, 2010 – Today, the Honourable Vic Toews, Minister of Public Safety, announced Canada�s National Platform on Disaster Risk Reduction, to better protect Canadians in the event of a disaster. The establishment of Canada�s National Platform further strengthens existing coordination on domestic disaster risk reduction initiatives developed by Public Safety Canada, such as the National Disaster Mitigation Strategy, the National Strategy and Action Plan for Critical Infrastructure, and the Federal Emergency Response Plan.
“Natural disasters, such as floods and severe weather can happen almost anywhere in Canada and it is important we do everything possible to reduce the risks before such events occur,” said Minister Toews. “Through the National Platform on Disaster Risk Reduction, we are ensuring a comprehensive, coordinated approach to emergency preparedness and disaster recovery. Everyone benefits when governments, non-government organizations, academia, and the private sector work together toward the same goal � the safety and security of Canadian families.”
The National Platform on Disaster Risk Reduction also allows stakeholders from across the public sector, the private sector, academia, and non-governmental organizations to:
- Share ideas and action in order to address disaster risk reduction issues
- Work towards the better integration of disaster risk reduction in national emergency management policies, plans and programs, and
- Strengthen stakeholder relationships to better address gaps in the prevention/mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery from disasters.
“I am pleased to welcome the delegates for this first National Roundtable on Disaster Risk Reduction to New Brunswick,” said Robert B. Trevors, New Brunswick�s Minister of Public Safety. “New Brunswick residents have first hand knowledge of the damage that spring floods and severe storms can cause. We can count on the public to support governments� efforts to reduce the risks before disasters strike, but governments cannot do this alone. The National Platform enables government, non-government and private sector organizations to work together to reduce risk and make Canada and our communities safer.”
This announcement coincides with the Annual National Roundtable on Disaster Risk Reduction, which is being hosted this year in Fredericton, New Brunswick, and is attended by over 70 stakeholders including the Canadian Red Cross.
In January 2005, Canada adopted the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA), under the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction. The National Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction is part of Canada�s commitment to deliver on the HFA. Results of an emergency preparedness survey by Public Safety Canada were also released today. The survey shows an increasing number of Canadians are preparing for emergencies and that two-thirds of adult Canadians (66%) say their family has taken action to prepare such as getting an emergency kit or making an emergency plan. The full survey results are available on www.GetPrepared.ca.
For more information on disaster mitigation including the National Platform on Disaster Risk Reduction, please visit the website www.publicsafety.gc.ca.