This article features IJDH’s Beatrice Lindstrom, the attorney who has been arguing the cholera case against the United Nations in court. When cholera initially broke out in Haiti, the UN origin was so obvious that Beatrice and others expected the organization to take responsibility and immediately begin addressing the problem. Six years later, the UN is only just beginning to admit responsibility and form a new strategy to eliminate cholera. Meanwhile, we have to decide whether to appeal the cholera case in the Supreme Court. Beatrice hopes that the UN plan will be fair enough not to merit this action.
Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text.
Beatrice Lindstrom ’10 advocates for cholera victims in Haiti
NYU Law News
October 18, 2016
When Beatrice Lindstrom ’10 decided to become a human rights lawyer, she says, “suing the United Nations was very far from my mind.” But as a staff attorney for the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (IJDH), Lindstrom has spent the past five years doing precisely that: she has played a key role in litigation holding the UN accountable for Haiti’s cholera epidemic.
Lindstrom, who grew up in Sweden and Korea and speaks five languages (English, Swedish, Korean, French, and Haitian Creole), has a longstanding interest in global justice. Prior to law school, she spent time in Thailand working in communities affected by the 2004 tsunami. Lindstrom did not plan to become a practicing lawyer; rather, she hoped to gain a background in human rights law that could be helpful for international aid work. “But while I was at NYU Law, I fell in love with litigation, and I gained a much better understanding of the ways in which the law can be used to bring about social change,” she says.
In 2010, after Haiti was hit by a devastating earthquake, a consultation with Professor Margaret Satterthwaite ’99 led Lindstrom to work for the Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI), the Haitian partner organization of IJDH.
“It was about a month into my stay in Haiti that suddenly we were hearing these reports coming in from around the countryside about cholera,” Lindstrom says. It quickly became clear that the source of the outbreak was a UN peacekeeper base that had allowed waste to contaminate the water source.
Click HERE for the full text.