We can replace material possessions, but we cannot replace people. I am repeatedly appalled at how many people die in disasters. The majority of victims are invariably the poor and vulnerable.
The report “Poverty & Death: Disaster Mortality 1996-2015” published today by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR), is a damning indictment of inequality. High income countries suffer huge economic losses in disasters, but people in low income countries pay with their lives.
On this International Day for Disaster Reduction, I call on all Governments to work with civil society and the private sector to move from managing disasters to managing risk. Let us move from a culture of reaction to one of prevention and build resilience by reducing loss of life.