Last update: 13-Dec-2013 3:20 am
Friday, December 13, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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ICT vital to regional disaster response: experts
Representatives of five Caribbean countries are this week gathering in Port-of-Spain to discuss disaster risk management (DRM) strategies for the entire region.
Delegations from Antigua, Barbados, Jamaica and Montserrat are participating in a two-day course with TT counterparts at the Carlton Savannah, Port-of-Spain.
The course is part of a coordinated effort by the United Nation’s Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) to increase the application of information and communication technologiy (ICT) in disaster response and risk management across the region.
On Monday, a smaller Meeting of Experts reviewed a UN regional report on the use of information and communications technologies (ICTs) for Disaster Risk Management in the Caribbean, authored by former iGovTT chairman, Atiba Phillips.
Montserrat Disaster Management and Coordination Agency (DMCA) Director Billy Darroux attended the session.
“The report revealed that there is some distance between national DRM strategies and the national ICT strategies, while recognising that ICT is a DRM tool and the use of it should be prioritised as part of disaster response,” he said.
The DMCA head also noted that in many countries of the region, ICT priorities are usually focused on data management and financial systems.
“Most ICT platforms don’t have a disaster risk reduction strategy and if the national ICT structures were damaged that could be a disaster in itself.”
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