European Forum on DRR 2018: Why prevention must be the new response

Image of Bijay Kumar at the European Forum on Disaster Risk Reduction 2018 in Rome, Italy GNDR Executive Director Bijay Kumar at the European Forum for Disaster Risk Reduction 2018 in Rome, Italy

It is necessary to move from managing disaster to managing disaster risk. Prevention of disaster must be the priority now and going forward. This was one of the main messages coming out of the European Forum on Disaster Risk Reduction 2018, that was celebrated by the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction on 21-23 November in Rome, Italy.

“If we spend 1 dollar in prevention, we save 15 dollars plus in response,” Head of UNISDR Mami Mizutori said. She also stressed the importance of political will to make this shift happen.

“Society must take into account the voice and experience of communities that are exposed to hazards, multiple risks and stress. It is essential to recognize the role of civil societies to facilitate processes so that citizens can make their respective States accountable to the various global commitments,” GNDR Executive Director Bijay Kumar noted. He participated in the Forum as part of panel on man-made disaster.

“Migration is an outcome of discrimination and indisposition of resources that are essential for living a life with dignity. If possible, Europe should assist in building resilience in local communities as committed in the Sendai Frameworks. If people then still chose to migrate, it will be out of a freedom of choice, not compulsion and marginalisation,” Mr. Kumar said.

Building on the outcomes of the European Forum on Disaster Risk Reduction held in Turkey and the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction celebrated in Mexico in 2017, the European Forum on Disaster Risk Reduction in Rome was organised to address key issues that can accelerate the implementation of the Sendai Framework in coherence with the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement. 

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