Spitzer Announces Major Firms Agree To Donate Services To Help Establish Confidential Database To Help Coordinate Wtc Relief Efforts
Attorney General Spitzer announced today that some of the nation's leading computer, technology, consulting and accounting firms have agreed to donate their products and services to help establish a confidential, shared database of World Trade Center victims.
The database will enable the charities and government agencies involved in the relief efforts to keep track of their giving and better coordinate their work It will be modeled on a similar system established in Oklahoma City, which officials there say played a significant role in helping to reduce duplication of services and fraud following the bombing of the Murrah Building in 1995.
The team of private sector firms is being coordinated by McKinsey & Company and is comprised of IBM, SilverStream Software, Qwest Communications, and KPMG. The firms are working with the charities, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and the Attorney General to plan, design, and ensure the security of the database. It's estimated that the products and services being donated by the firms are worth millions of dollars.
"This is yet another major step forward in pulling together all of the groups involved in the relief efforts as we try to ensure that the public's unprecedented outpouring of generosity for the victims is used wisely and efficiently and gets to them as quickly as possible," said Spitzer.
"Each of these companies has made significant contributions already, and is to be commended for continuing to donate its time, expertise and resources to help the victims - their combined efforts represent an enormous contribution to the overall relief effort."
Spitzer noted that the Red Cross, Safe Horizon, the Salvation Army and the September 11th fund - which together account for over 80% of the more than $1 billion raised to date for the victims - have all announced their support for the database, and their intention to participate in its planning and design.
In addition to the confidential database, the Attorney General's office has already established a website of some 190 different charities and other groups involved in relief efforts, wtcrelief.info. The site allows victims, as well as donors, to punch in key words like "college education" or "mortgage assistance" and be given a list of groups offering those specific areas of aid.