Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

An Evaluation of the Causes and Results of U.N. Peacekeeper Actions

This four part series details the history of sexual assault by UN peacekeepers and what has been done to combat it. The UN peacekeeping mission began in 1948, right after WWII. In order to protect the soldiers who were deployed, the U.N provided its soldiers with impunity (all cases against peacekeepers had to be brought in the parent country, in order to protect the soldiers from fraudulent charges.)However, this protection has been the cause of many grievances for the women and children of these nations—victims of sexual assault are unable to take their assailants to court. Between 2004 and 2016, the UN received almost 2000 reports of sexual assault perpetrated by peacekeepers. In predominately black nations with a low socioeconomic status, the rate of sexual violence is much more  significant and leads researchers to believe that the idea of racial […]

Haiti: Senate votes to Ban Same Sex Marriage But The Chamber Of  The Deputies And The President Has The Final Say

The Haitian senate passed a bill banning same sex marriage and any form of public displays of affection or support for/in the LGBT community. This bill allows for further marginalization and mistreatment of the LGBT community by stripping them of their rights to protest over their treatment. The senators used the Article 3 of Haiti’s Constitution to back up their vote. The bill will soon go to the Chamber of the Deputies and is expected to pass. Although, if the both chambers pass the bill, it will not become law of the land until President Jovenel Moïse signs and publishes it in the country’s official Journal, Le Moniteur. Read the full article HERE. Haiti Senate votes to ban gay marriage Agence France Press, republished by Indian Express, August 3, 2017 Haiti’s constitution established a secular republic but the country is marked by deep […]

Catholic Priest Calls on Haitian Officials to Defend Cholera Victims

During the celebration of Feast of St Ann and Joachim in Tianon, Mirbalais located in the central Plateau of Haiti, Father Serdieu-Jean commends the Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI) for its legal work as well as its advocacy work that generates support from international human rights to press for justice for the victims of cholera. “For more than six years, cholera has put our compatriots in Haiti, especially in Fort Michel, Mont Blanc No. Six, to name a few, in a situation where they do not have clean water, yet they sell all they have in order to take care of people who are infected and bury people’s bodies who died from cholera. This portion of the population that is consistently neglected continue to be victims of cholera every day.This is very grave and it will be even more grave if […]

Haiti’s Senate Bill Discriminates Against LGBTQ Community

In June, a bill was adopted by the Haitian Senate which not only violates the Haitian Constitution, it also further marginalizes and discriminates against the LGBTQ community. Consensual homosexual relationships in Haiti have been legal since 1986, yet due to religious culture, the subject remains taboo. Mario Joseph, Managing Attorney at the Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI), urged the Haitian government to protect the rights and dignity of Haitian LGBTQ individuals. “The Haitian government must respect its obligation to protect disadvantaged populations instead of persecuting them,” said Joseph. Read Full Article HERE Haiti Senate Bill Discriminates Against LGBTQ Community, Human Rights Org Says The Haitian Times A recent bill adopted by the Haitian Senate last month discriminates against the LGBTQ community and violates the Haitian constitution, Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI) said in a recent release. The Bill on the Reputation and Assessment of Good and Moral […]

Haiti: The Return of the Disbanded Army Triggers Bad Memories Amongst Haitian Population

  After more than two decades, Haiti is reconstructing its army known as lame kraze zo or lame kou deta, concerns grow amongst the population. Defense Minister Herve Denis stated that the army’s mission would be to combat contraband trafficking and provide relief during natural disasters. However, human rights advocates argued that Haiti should instead spend it’s limited financial to reinforce the capacity of its National Police Force of 15,000 officers. “People are signing up because they are desperate for jobs and meaning,” said Brian Concannon, the Executive Director of Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti. “I have seen nothing that would indicate that the army would do a better job of policing the borders or responding to natural disasters than civilian police,” concluded Concannon. Read Full Article HERE Haiti Is Bringing Back Its Army A history of brutal, Duvalierist […]

Cholera Victims Press for Individual Compensation

As the United Nations winds down its 13-year peacekeeping in Haiti,  the victims of cholera demand that the organization fulfills the promise it made to the Haitian people nearly a year ago. The U.N. promised to raise $400 million to fund its New Approach to cholera in Haiti which included individual compensation to the most affected families.  Brian Concannon, the Executive Director of  Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti urged the U.N. to consult with cholera victims before making its final decision. “Moving forward with only community projects without consulting Haitians will not be accepted in Haiti and will not effectively address the harms that have been suffered by victims,” Concannon said. Join our Time 2Deliver campaign to urge the U.N. to deliver on its promise and urge your country to contribute to the cholera fund if it has […]

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