WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Susan Collins, R-Me., Ranking Member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, on Thursday made the following statement about the ongoing deployment of federal emergency assistance to the island nation of Haiti:
“My heart and prayers go out to the people of Haiti, devastated by a powerful earthquake that may have killed upwards of 50,000 people,” Senator Collins said. “In the aftermath of that huge quake, tens of thousands of Haitians are homeless and displaced. The United States is working hard to extend rapid help and urgent assistance.
“To date, I have been contacted by several families in Maine with loved ones in Haiti. My office is working hard to help find additional information and, when possible, to help with evacuations. Mainers who need assistance regarding relatives or friends in Haiti should contact one of my state offices, which are working on a coordinated effort with agencies in Washington, D.C., to get people in Haiti the assistance they so desperately need.
"Secretary Napolitano briefed me this afternoon on the efforts the Department of Homeland Security is undertaking to assist in the rescue and recovery effort. The Coast Guard was the first agency on the scene assisting with an assessment and rescue efforts. FEMA is providing water and food assistance. Customs and Border Protection is preparing in the event that there are mass evacuations.
“Based on this briefing, I believe that all the resources of the DHS are being mobilized to assist in every way possible."