United States Mission to the United Nations
Office of Press and Public Diplomacy
For Immediate Release
August 19, 2022
Statement by Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield on World Humanitarian Day
Today, the United States joins the international community in honoring the countless humanitarians who deliver lifesaving food, water, and medicine to millions in need around the world. Every day, humanitarian workers brave the frontlines of war, pandemics, disaster, and persecution with the mission of ensuring that vulnerable populations can live with dignity.
Last year alone, more than 140 aid workers were killed in the line of duty, according to the Aid Worker Security Database. All but three of them were from the countries where they were delivering assistance, while simply serving their own communities in times of need.
I have worked on humanitarian causes for nearly 40 years. But today, despite the many modern tools at our disposal to reduce human suffering, we are facing the greatest needs and worst global food crisis in my lifetime. As of July, the UN estimates that 306 million people need humanitarian aid and protection – the highest number in decades. We are confronting a dire emergency and we call on the international community to join us in addressing the many needs around the world.
Over the last year, during my travels, I have had the opportunity to meet with humanitarian workers around the world – from Ecuador and Haiti, Turkey and Jordan, Moldova and Romania, and Uganda and Ghana, to name a few. I have been inspired by their dedication, their passion, and their commitment. We owe it to them to do everything we can to support their efforts.
As the world’s largest humanitarian donor, the United States provided nearly $13 billion in humanitarian assistance last year. Whenever disaster strikes or conflicts rage, we are committed to answering the call to save lives and alleviate human suffering.
On this World Humanitarian Day, let us reinforce our collective efforts to serve people in need, wherever they are, and to protect and thank the selfless humanitarian workers risking their lives to uphold our common humanity everywhere.