Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

HRC’s Concluding Observations on Haiti Human Rights

The Human Rights Committee’s concluding observations for Haiti were published on October 30, 2014 with a press conference at 1:30 p.m. Geneva time. This is the final outcome document that brought Mario Joseph and Nicole Phillips to Geneva earlier this month. (Their conference call, along with other Haitian human rights leaders, is available here.) Below are excerpts from the press release pertaining to Haiti.  A press release from IJDH and BAI commending the Committee’s concluding observations is available here. UN Human Rights Committee’s Concluding Observations on: Haiti Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights October 27, 2014 PRESS CONFERENCE –THURSDAY 30 OCTOBER Palais des Nations, Press Room III at 13:30 GENEVA (27 October 2014) – The UN Human Rights Committee will be holding a news conference to discuss the outcome of its 112th session on Thursday 30 October at 13:30 in Press […]

Reports Sent to UN Human Rights Committee

October 7-10, 2014, the Government of Haiti will be reviewed by the UN Human Rights Committee in Geneva, a body of independent experts that monitors implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). Haiti acceded to the ICCPR on February 6, 1991. Under the Haitian Constitution, international treaties, once ratified, become a part of the legislation of Haiti and abrogate any pre-existing, conflicting laws. Haiti, like all States parties, must submit regular reports to the Committee on how the rights are being implemented. States must report initially one year after acceding to the Covenant and then generally every four years. The Committee examines each report and addresses its concerns and recommendations to the State party in the form of “concluding observations”. This is Haiti’s first review. Haiti submitted its first report in 2013. The BAI and IJDH […]

Op-Ed: Hope, Haiti and an End to Gender-Based Violence

By Lara Pukatch, Take Part April 23, 2013 The global epidemic of violence against women and girls can be addressed by how America spends its foreign aid funds. It’s appalling. In some countries, up to 70 percent of women will experience some form of violence in their lifetimes. But earlier this month I found reason for hope in the words of a Haitian women’s advocate—we’ll call her Marie—who I met in a rural town a few hours away from Port-au-Prince. “I want women to see themselves as women with possibility,” she told me. Marie—and women across the world—work every day to reclaim that sense of possibility for the millions of women and girls facing gender-based violence. For her part, Marie works with a local organization that fights domestic child slavery—known in Haiti as the restavek system. Most of these domestic child slaves are girls. They are often […]

Universal Periodic Review Restavèk Report: The Persistence of Child Labor and Slavery: English, Kreyol (Restavèk Freedom)

EnglishKreyol English Haiti Submission to the United Nations Universal Periodic Review Twelfth Session of the Working Group on the UPR Human Rights Council 3-14 October 2011 Restavèk: The Persistence of Child Labor and Slavery Download a copy: Haiti-UPR-Restavek-Report-FINAL   Submitted by: Restavèk Freedom* Endorsed by: Bureau des Avocats Internationaux Center for Constitutional Rights Conférence des universitaires pour la défense des droits et de la liberté Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti LAMP for Haiti Foundation Link Haiti, Inc. Paloma Institute UC Davis Immigration Law Clinic UnityAyiti A. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY This individual report highlights the plight of restavèk children, child domestic servants, in Haiti as stipulated in the General Guidelines for the preparation of Information under the Universal Periodic Review. Part B notes the continuing practice of restavèk despite its prohibition under international and Haitian law.  Part C describes the restavèk […]

Combating Human Trafficking in the Western Hemisphere: The Need for Increased NGO Involvement

By Kelsey Cary, Truthout Human Trafficking is a global industry that transcends borders, regions, and cultures. Within the Western Hemisphere trafficking is an important issue that arguably helps to shape relations between Latin American and the United States. In June 2010, the State Department Report on Trafficking in Persons (TIP) included, for the first time, in its ten year existence, a ranking allocated to the United States as well as 177 other countries. The TIP report helps substantiate the claim that the United States and Latin American governments must strive to improve the lives of millions of innocent people who increasingly are victims of human trafficking. The restaveks, Haitian youth forced into domestic labor without compensation, exemplify the lack of protective measures against child trafficking who usually turn out to be the chief victims of trafficking. The plight of these […]

Child slavery a growing problem in Haiti, advocate says

By Ninette Sosa, CNN Child slavery has escalated six months after a devastating earthquake demolished the Haitian capital and left a generation of orphans, according to an advocate who works in the Caribbean nation. Jean-Robert Cadet is the author of “Restavek,” a book on the plight of Haiti’s child slaves. The word, derived from a French expression that means “‘stay with,” refers to children given by a biological parent to a family for the purpose of doing minor housework in exchange for school, food and housing. “Once children enter the family, they become a domestic slave and they are at the mercy of everyone in the house,” Cadet said. “The only thing worse is if the child is a girl, because there is sexual abuse and the risk of pregnancy once she reaches puberty.” If a girl gets pregnant, she […]

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