Congressman Albio Sires Newsletter

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In these weeks following the disaster that hit Haiti on January 12, 2010, I want to take this opportunity to send my prayers and condolences to those whose lives have been struck by the earthquake. My colleagues and I in the House of Representatives remain committed to assisting the people of Haiti as they confront the untold effects of this natural disaster. We have urged Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Republican Leader John Boehner to continue to send robust financial assistance to the Haitian people as they recover from this tragedy and rebuild their homes, communities, and lives.

Contacting Loved Ones

The State Department Operations Center has set up the following number for Americans seeking information about U.S. Citizens living or traveling in Haiti: 1-888-407-4747. For inquires regarding relatives living and who have citizenship in Haiti, the International Committee of the Red Cross has set up a Family Links website which allows people in Haiti and the United States to register the names of relatives which whom they want to restore contact. It will incorporate responses to those queries as they become available.

Donating to Relief Efforts

As Americans reach out to the people of Haiti with their donations of hard-earned income, my colleagues and I in the House of Representatives have worked to provide an immediate benefit for those who have already given and incentive for those who are considering a charitable contribution. On January 20, 2010 the House of Representatives is considering a bill to allow taxpayers to claim charitable deduction in 2009 for Haiti relief. This legislation would allow individuals who make charitable contributions to victims of the earthquake in Haiti to claim an itemized charitable deduction on their 2009 tax return. The Senate will also be considering similar legislation.

For information on how to make a contribution to relief efforts in Haiti, please visit the State Department’s dedicated web page that offers advice for anyone wishing to provide assistance to those affected by the earthquake.

My thoughts are with the people in the 13th District who have family or friends living or traveling in Haiti. Please contact my Jersey City office at 201-222-2828 if you have questions on how to reach your loved ones. I will continue to work to help the brave people of Haiti recover from this tragedy and build a stronger and brighter future.

Sincerely,
Albio Sires
Albio Sires