Sept. 1, 2005
FREDERICTON (CNB) - On behalf of the Government of New Brunswick, Premier Bernard Lord, Public Safety Minister Wayne Steeves and Intergovernmental and International Relations Percy Mockler expressed their shock and sadness today about the devastation wrought by hurricane Katrina on the Gulf Coast, in particular the states of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.
New Brunswick and New Brunswickers have a particular bond with the people of Louisiana. The Province of New Brunswick has a co-operation agreement with Louisiana, which takes root in the historic and cultural ties that exist between our francophone and Acadian communities, and promotes economic, cultural and educational co-operation between our two regions.
"The ties that exist between the Acadian communities of New Brunswick and Louisiana have grown in recent years through international events such as the 1999 and 2004 Congrès Mondial Acadien and the 400th anniversary of the Acadian presence in North America," Mockler said. "New Brunswickers everywhere are truly distressed by the devastation these people are facing today. I am calling Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco and Lieut.-Gov. Mitch Landrieu to express our sympathies and to offer our support."
"The Department of Public Safety is in contact with Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada, and I have asked our New Brunswick Emergency Measures Organization to co-ordinate any requests for help from New Brunswick," Steeves said. "We will watch the situation closely and will be prepared to answer the call for help."
Mockler has also been in contact with Red Cross New Brunswick, whose staff and volunteers are busy co-ordinating the province's efforts. New Brunswickers wishing to provide assistance to those suffering from the devastation brought by hurricane Katrina are encouraged to call the New Brunswick branch of the Canadian Red Cross at 1-800-418-1111 or 1-506-548-0835. Citizens are requested not to report to affected areas to provide assistance.
The Consulates-General in Dallas and Atlanta have been in touch with about 50 Canadians in the affected areas of the United States and all are safe.
For information about Canadians in the United States who might have been impacted by the hurricane, contact Foreign Affairs Canada. Canadian citizens outside Canada can call collect to 613-996-8885. For calls originating in Canada and the United States, call 1-800-267-6788, or 613-944-6788.
MEDIA CONTACT: Gisèle Regimbal, communications, Intergovernmental and International Relations, 506-444-4594.