Haiti Quake Cleanup Is Only First Step

Quake will delay but must not stop ongoing development efforts
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 14, 2010 10:46 AM CST
The flattened cathedral in Haiti’s capital Port-au-Prince.   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – Before “one of the great humanitarian emergencies in the history of the Americas” struck, Haiti had a "bright future," Bill Clinton writes. The 42nd president is a UN special envoy to the perennially troubled nation, where he has helped spearhead development efforts. Today, “what Haiti needs most is money for water, food, shelter and basic medical supplies to bring immediate relief to those who are homeless, hungry and hurt.” But the “plan for long-term development” cannot “be abandoned.”

“First we must care for the injured, take care of the dead, and sustain those who are homeless, jobless and hungry,” Clinton writes in the Washington Post. Then, “as we clear the rubble, we will create better tomorrows by building Haiti back better,” with stronger buildings and a commitment to sustainable energy. Relief efforts should assist Haiti “in becoming the strong, secure nation its people have always desired and deserved.”

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