Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Camp Visit Report (Mennonite Central Committee)

05312010-Camp-Visit-Report-Mennonite-Central-Committee (1)

No Shelter From the Storm for Haiti Quake Victims

By Ben Fox, Associated Press May 31, 2010 PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — A hurricane season predicted to be one of the wettest on record opens Tuesday in the Caribbean, where hundreds of thousands of Haitian earthquake victims have only tarps or fraying tents to protect them in a major storm. The Haitian government, which had five months to prepare, says it’s still working on emergency and evacuation plans. But it is unclear where people will go with many churches, schools and other potential shelters toppled by the quake. Since the Jan. 12 earthquake killed up to 300,000 people and left more than 1.5 million homeless, there has been little progress on clearing rubble so people can return to their neighborhoods or building sturdier shelters. Dr. Jean Pape, one of the country’s most prominent public health experts, estimates that only 1 percent […]

OAS: Conference on Haiti’s future seeks “to define strategy”

M & C News Washington – The head of the Organization of American States (OAS) on Monday described this week’s conference on Haiti’s recovery from January’s earthquake as a chance to ‘define a strategy of solidarity’ with the Caribbean country. The Conference on the Future of Haiti is set to start Tuesday in the Dominican Republic, which shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti. ‘The path to development for the Caribbean nation cannot wait, so I hope the summit in Punta Cana allows us to define a strategy of solidarity with this country, which will solve the timing and the political and technical issues of international aid,’ said OAS Secretary General Jose Miguel Insulza. Haiti, which has long been the poorest country in the Americas, was ravaged by a major earthquake on January 12. Insulza said there is an ‘urgent’ need […]

Legal help for Haiti shifts to long-term focus

By Luis Millan, The Lawyers Weekly Pascal Paradis(l), the head of Lawyers Without Borders Canada, sits with Gervais Charles, Bâtonnier of the Port-au-Prince law society, last month as they leaf through an agreement they had just signed. [Photo courtesy of LWB Canada] More than four months after the massive earthquake that killed nearly 250,000 people, left 1 million others homeless and leveled the capital, Port-au-Prince, Haiti, the Canadian legal community is slowly beginning to shift its focus from providing emergency response to helping Haiti lay the groundwork towards the reconstruction of a justice system that will “avoid the excesses of the past.” In the past two weeks, an agreement was signed with the Barreau de Port-au-Prince to help put in place legal aid for victims. The Office of the Commissioner for Federal Judicial Affairs Canada organized a roundtable with a […]

As MINUSTAH Gases Students: CEP Sets New Elections for November 28

Kim Ives, Haiti Liberte On May 25, thousands again marched through the capital to demand Préval’s resignation, Aristide’s return and an end to the military occupation The President of Haiti’s Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) announced on May 24 that presidential and parliamentary elections would be held on Nov. 28, 2010, the Constitutionally prescribed date. “The CEP is up to the task of organizing general elections in the country,” said Gaillot Dorsinvil, who is also the Handicapped Sector’s representative on the nine member council, handpicked by President René Préval. But tens of thousands of Haitians don’t agree and have been demonstrating in streets around the country in recent weeks to demand, not just a new CEP, but Préval’s resignation. “Nobody has confi dence in Préval or his CEP to organize credible elections,” said Evans Paul, a leader of the Convention for […]

Empower women to speed recovery

By Kathleen Kline, Miami Herald Gender equality in every aspect of Haiti’s recovery and reconstruction process is vital to the country’s future prosperity. To assure the highest returns on the $9.9 billion in aid pledged by the international community, Haitian women and men must have equal roles in rebuilding Haiti’s political, economic and social infrastructure. Investments in women and girls must be made at the highest levels of government and in community grassroots organizations. Equal representation of men and women in positions of power is paramount to addressing poverty, poor healthcare, education deficiencies and sexual discrimination. Before the earthquake Haitian women had a low level of political participation and held about 4 percent of seats in Parliament. Lack of representation limited their voice in economic and social policy decision-making. Moving forward, Haitian women must have leadership roles in national government. […]

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