December 31, 2014
“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”
My name is Vladimir Laguerre and I am a native of Port-au-Prince, Haiti.
I am the former Foreign Media Liaison Chief to Haiti’s current President [2011-2013]. Before that, I was a sports commentator for Telemax and Tele Métropole in Port-au-Prince and a contractor for the New York Times covering Haiti. My work at the New York Times gave me the chance to better understand how BAI and IJDH’s work is important for establishing prosperity and stability in Haiti. Who can forget the role of these organizations before, during and even after the Raboteau trial? Who can ignore the role of BAI and IJDH in providing justice to the thousands of Haitian victims of MINUSTAH’s cholera?I’d like to take this holiday season as an opportunity to thank Brian Concannon and all the staff at Bureau des Avocats Internationaux [BAI] and the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti [IJDH] for their work in my country: defending human rights, the cholera victims, etc.
This letter, I write on behalf of the 10,123,787 people in Haiti, as a way to express to BAI and IJDH my appreciation and respect for all their work in my country.
Defending human rights in a country like Haiti, where the justice system is failing, is not and will never be an easy job. In some countries like the United States of America, the government assists people who cannot afford the services of a lawyer. In Haiti, it’s totally different: No money, No Justice. Some people, in spite of being able to pay for the services of a lawyer, spend years in prison. The reason? The Caribbean country has a problem with Rule of Law. Most reform efforts have been ineffective. A lot of people spend years in prison for a crime they didn’t commit. They are the victims of the injustice.
There are many kinds of victims of injustice in Haiti: those who saw their rights violated by another [the rape victims], by the government [the political prisoners], or by an institution [the victims of cholera]. Thankfully, they have Bureau des Avocats Internationaux and Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti that stand with them as they fight for justice. Powering Haitian Solutions is not only hard work; it is expensive work. Please, don’t give up, because BAI and IJDH are very important to establishing prosperity and stability in Haiti.
Thank you for standing beside the Haitian people!