LOUISIANA – Haitian and American authorities announced the establishment of the State Partnership Program between the Government of Haiti and the Louisiana National Guard (LANG).
Haitian Secretary of State for Local Communities Fritz Jean Louis, and the Adjutant General of the LANG, Brigadier General Glenn H. Curtis, made the announcement at a ceremony in Tabarre. The agreement creates professional and institutional linkages between the LANG and Haitian authorities, focused on support to Haiti’s emergency management agency, the Direction de la Protection Civile, as well as the Haitian National Police and Coast Guard.
Brigadier General Curtis said “We are truly committed to Haiti, and we know that we will gain as much as we give from this relationship with our Haitian colleagues.”
Deputy Chief of Mission Daniel Foote, Secretary of State for Local Communities Fritz Jean Louis and Brigadier General Glenn H. Curtis.
Secretary of State Jean Louis said “Louisiana and Haiti have a common understanding of the challenges of our environment. Haiti will bring to bear all of its assets and capabilities to this partnership.”
The State Partnership Program brings together National Guard units from 46 U.S. states and territories with 65 partner-nations from around the world to increase capacity in the areas of homeland security, disaster response and mitigation, crisis management, border, port, and aviation security, and emergency medical response. Partner-nations include countries with large military forces, like Chile and Poland, to Costa Rica and Dominica, which do not have armies.
U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission Daniel Foote noted that strengthening Haiti’s capacity to protect its citizens from threats like crime, drug trafficking, and natural disasters was a priority for the U.S. government and said, “We believe that this partnership between Haiti and Louisiana and the relationships that will be formed between professionals will help make Haiti stronger and its people safer.”
In May 2010, then-Minister of Justice Paul Denis requested a partnership with the LANG for Haiti. The LANG deployed to Mandrin, Artibonite Department in 2010 and 2011 as part of the New Horizons mission, where it provided medical care to local residents and carried out school and water well construction.