Minister Gould statement on World Humanitarian Day


August 19, 2020 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

The Honourable Karina Gould, Minister of International Development, today issued the following statement:

“On this day, we honour the bravery and dedication of humanitarian workers, who work tirelessly to provide life-saving support and protection to the people most in need around the world. Every day, these real-life heroes put their own lives on the line to offer life-saving care, such as food, water, protection and health services, in response to communities affected by crises.

“This year, humanitarian workers continue to support the most vulnerable people, who are often already fighting the effects of natural disasters, climate change and armed conflict—and now must also face the challenges and risks of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“From addressing the devastating effects of COVID-19 to containing locust invasions in Africa and Asia and responding to the recent explosion in Beirut, humanitarian workers continue to uphold humanitarian principles and to bring hope and relief to those in need. They save lives, protect dignity and alleviate the suffering of millions of people around the world affected by crisis and conflict.

“World Humanitarian Day was established to pay tribute to humanitarian workers who have died in the line of duty and to honour those who continue to do their work with passion, conviction and courage. All too often, humanitarian and medical workers face threats to their safety and security. They may be subjected to targeted or indiscriminate attacks or other acts of violence that contravene international humanitarian law. For this alone, they deserve our gratitude and respect.

“It has been widely recognized that women and girls often bear the brunt of crises. Humanitarian workers strive tirelessly to address their needs, including by taking actions to prevent, mitigate and respond to sexual and gender-based violence and by promoting sexual and reproductive health and rights.

“Canada will continue to provide humanitarian funding to trusted partners as they respond to the urgent needs of people around the world. Today, we thank these real-life heroes, who make these responses possible.” 


Guillaume Dumas
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of International Development

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada
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