Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

UN’s Disastrous Legacy in Haiti – Edwidge Danticat

The United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti, MINUSTAH, established in June of 2004, has finally come to an end after thirteen long years. MINUSTAH was established to create a “secure and stable environment” in Haiti, which was viewed as a threat to international peace and security in the region.” However, instead of pacifying the nation, MINUSTAH acted as “a continuous military operation in a country in which there was no war.” In addition to killing, injuring and raping Haitian citizens, United Nations peacekeepers also caused the cholera epidemic which has claimed thousands of Haitian lives. The UN has yet to alleviate the trauma it has caused Haiti. Meanwhile, the institution has replaced MINUSTAH with a smaller version, MINUJUSTH (United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti), aimed at helping the Haitian government strengthen its institutions and police force. The evidence […]

American Red Cross donations and local organizations

After the 2010 earthquake, many donors were pained to learn how little of their contributions actually went to Haiti. The American Red Cross was a prime example, according to an investigation by ProPublica and NPR. “The reputation of the Red Cross in Haiti is very negative,” Nicole Phillips of IJDH said. In the same way consumers “shop local,” the solution is to give local. Rather than donating to foreign NGOs with high overhead costs to help Haitians after Hurricane Matthew, Edwidge Danticat and others advocate for organizations based in Haiti. Nicole Phillips, who lives in Haiti, said, “By giving money directly to the Haitian network, you’re cutting out a huge sum of cost that otherwise would have to pay for the middleman, for plane tickets, accommodations, et cetera  — it’s going directly to Haitians.” Local organizations, and NGOs with a proven track record, are […]

Electoral Crisis Shows that “Corruption in Haiti is legal”

When Michel Martelly didn’t make it into the presidential runoff elections in 2010, he cried fraud and his supporters took to the streets until the Organization of American States, Hillary Clinton and the United Nations changed the results. Now in the 2015 elections, with ample evidence of fraud in favor of President Martelly’s party, nothing seems to be changing. The international community has endorsed the results and the party, PHTK, seems poised to elect the majority of parliament and mayors, as well as President. Other presidential candidates (including the second-place finisher), civil society groups, and average Haitians are all speaking out and protesting the results but the impact of their efforts remains to be seen. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. Sweet Micky and the Sad Déjà Vu of Haiti’s Presidential Elections Edwidge Danticat, The New Yorker December […]

Famous Authors Speak Out Against DR Deportations

Human rights activist worldwide are uniting to denounce the Dominican Republic’s latest decision to begin deporting people of Haitian descent. Among them are famous Haitian author Edwidge Danticat and famous Dominican author Junot Diaz. At a recent event, the two spoke out about the racism that underlies this decision and the precarious situation of people living in fear of deportation. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. Authors Junot Díaz, Edwidge Danticat decry Dominican efforts to remove Haitians Jeffrey Pierre, Miami Herald June 24, 2015 Junot Díaz, the Pulitizer Prize-winning author, just returned from his native Dominican Republic this week. “There’s a state of terror,’’ in Santo Domingo, the Dominican capital, referring to the country’s humanitarian crisis, with the Dominican government threatening to deport hundreds of thousands of people — Dominicans of Haitian descent and undocumented immigrants […]

Dominican Republic’s Mass Deportations May Set Dangerous Precedent

In September 2013, a Dominican Republic (DR) Constitutional Court issued a ruling that rendered hundreds of thousands of immigrant’s descendants stateless. The largest population affected by this ruling is people of Haitian descent, who have had a tumultuous history with the DR to begin with. Now, Dominican politicians are threatening to deport those who missed a recent registration deadline that many found nearly impossible to meet. Well-known Haitian author Edwidge Danticat explains the difficult history between Haiti and DR and why this current situation is so important to anyone who cares about human rights. A partial transcript is below. Click HERE for the full text and video of the report. The Dominican Republic’s “Ethnic Purging”: Edwidge Danticat on Mass Deportation of Haitian Families Democracy Now! June 17, 2015 The Dominican Republic is set to begin what some are calling “ethnic […]

Activists Urge Ending Deportations to Haiti

Two human rights clinics published a report recommending a stop to deportations to Haiti. The report begins with a foreword from Haitian author Edwidge Danticat and compiles stories of people deported for minor crimes, like failing to return a rental car on time. Many of the deportees were longtime Lawful Permanent Residents, left children behind in the US, were mentally ill, and/or were terrified of the situation they’d face in returning to a country they barely know. Activists hope that these human stories will help persuade legislators to stop deportations and extend Temporary Protected Status for Haitians. Activists say Haitian deportations need to stop Rebecca Savransky, Miami Herald February 19, 2015 Wildrick Guerrier had been living in the U.S. for years, along with his mother, fiance, two younger brothers and 9-year-old son, all of whom were citizens or lawful permanent residents. […]

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