Transfer of Responsibility for Emergency Management Services for Manitoba Flood Evacuees Complete by February 1, 2014

OTTAWA, Dec. 10, 2013 /CNW/ - The Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, today announced that delivery of services for 2011 Manitoba flood evacuees will fully transition from the Manitoba Association of Native Firefighters (MANFF) to the Canadian Red Cross (CRC) by February 1, 2014.

"Our Government's priority is the health and safety of First Nations and that's why we have been working with the Canadian Red Cross to ensure evacuees continue to get the services and support they need until they can safely return to their home communities," said Minister Valcourt.

"The Red Cross has a long history of providing disaster relief and recovery assistance in Canada and around the world," said John Byrne, Director General, Disaster Management, for the Canadian Red Cross. "We welcome the opportunity to lend our expertise in disaster recovery to the Government of Canada in supporting the long-term recovery needs of the 2011 Manitoba flood evacuees."

"MANFF welcomes this transition to the Canadian Red Cross," said the Board of Directors of MANFF. "The well-being of the people affected remains our priority. We will work with all partners to ensure a seamless transition and will continue to support evacuees through this period."

"I am pleased by this announcement today, as flood evacuees and their families would greatly benefit from the expertise and knowledge the Red Cross possesses through their many years of dedicated service to those who are in need of assistance," said the Honourable Eric Robinson, Manitoba Minister of Aboriginal and Northern Affairs.

The full transition is expected to be complete by February 1, 2014. From that point on, the Canadian Red Cross will assume responsibility for the temporary provision of benefits and services to Manitoba First Nations 2011 flood evacuees. The Government's priority remains to achieve a long-term accommodation solution for the First Nation communities that were affected by the 2011 floods.

In the coming weeks, the federal government, the province and the Canadian Red Cross will be working together with MANFF to fully implement the transition of services. All parties share the goal of a smooth transition and have used the needs assessment conducted by the Canadian Red Cross to build an understanding of the needs of evacuees.

The Government of Canada remains focused on four priorities, as outlined by the Prime Minister, that Canadians care most about: their families, the safety of our streets and communities, their pride in being a citizen of this country, and their personal financial security.

SOURCE: Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada

For further information:

This release is also available on the Internet at www.aandc.gc.ca.

For more information, please contact:

Minister's Office        
Erica Meekes
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Bernard Valcourt
819-997-0002

Media Relations
Aboriginal Affairs and Northern
Development Canada
819-953-1160

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