Philippines

Caraga intensifies human-induced displacement preparedness

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By Venus L. Garcia

BUTUAN CITY, Oct. 11 (PIA) -- The members of the response cluster and Caraga Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council convened in this city to polish the comprehensive plan as the basis for concrete response action and implementation of policy relating to human-induced displacement.

The three-day workshop aims to review and update the regional document where the interoperability of the established response systems such as the cluster approach, emergency operations center and incident command center will be integrated in the updated contingency plan.

Office of Civil Defense Caraga regional director Liza Mazo puts a strong emphasis on the importance of following the response protocols in addressing crisis not only caused by natural calamities but including armed conflict.

“The formulation of this contingency plan started in 2016 and we need to revisit and update it as this will be our guide in responding well to an emergency and its potential humanitarian impact. This will be useful especially now that we are intensifying our efforts related to the implementation of Executive Order (EO) 70 of President Duterte,” said Mazo.

Arthur Casiño, resource person, also tackled the conflict sensitivity approach and ‘Do No Harm’ (DNH) principle.

He said the main call for the DNH is to encourage the responding individuals or organizations to make sure that their actions will not cause any problem.

According to him, there are practical tools that focus on how organizations interact with conflict and how they can work effectively in conflict contexts while helping to mitigate their negative impacts on conflict, and support local capacities for peace.

“To do that we have to exercise conflict sensitivity. It is good to note that state actors in Caraga region are doing this and that I see a growing practice of the DNH principle,” Casiño said.

Captain Aldim Viernes, civil-military operations (CMO) officer of the 401st Brigade, Philippine Army who joined the planning workshop, said the plan will be helpful in providing effective, efficient, timely and well-coordinated response mechanisms in the event of the occurrence of armed conflict in the region.

Mazo said the contingency plan and the formulation of strategies are vital in doing appropriate actions and in developing community resilience. (VLG/PIA-Caraga)