Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Sienna Merope-Synge Discusses U.N. Accountability in Haiti

This article was originally published by Yale Law School Sienna Merope-Synge, a Staff Attorney at the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (IJDH), spoke on February 12 about her organization’s fight to secure adequate remedies for victims of the U.N.’s introduction of a 2010 cholera epidemic in Haiti. The talk was co-sponsored by the Schell Center, the Global Health Justice Partnership (GHJP), and the American Constitution Society. Merope-Synge began by explaining that many viewed this cholera outbreak-the first in Haiti’s history—as a humanitarian crisis, not a legal one. But as it became clear that the U.N. peacekeeping mission in Haiti had caused the crisis by dumping contaminated waste into local rivers, people began coming to IJDH’s offices and ask whether there was something the law could do to address the situation. IJDH had to work creatively, since the U.N. has […]

The Oxfam sex abuse scandal demonstrates the urgent need for legal accountability in the humanitarian aid sector

By Sienna Merope-Synge Sienna Merope-Synge is a Staff Attorney at the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti This article was originally published by Al Jazeera The backlash against Oxfam continues to grow, but the scandal is just the tip of the iceberg of unaccountable “humanitarian” action in Haiti. In the wake of revelations that its staff solicited prostitutes in post-earthquake Haiti, Oxfam has pointed to an internal investigation that led to senior employees resigning or being fired, and released a new 10-point plan to eradicate sexual abuse. But what is striking is that the charity never treated its staff’s abuses as a legal matter. Let’s be clear: this behaviour wasn’t just unacceptable, it was unlawful. Prostitution is illegal under Haitian law and if minors were involved, this was also statutory rape. The behaviour also constituted illegal child prostitution under […]

Make Justice Happen: Join IJDH as a Legal Intern this Summer to Fight for Cholera Justice in Haiti

About Us Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (IJDH) has successfully helped Haitians enforce their human rights since 2004. The Institute partners with Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI) to support grassroots struggles for justice in Haiti and in the powerful countries abroad where decisions about Haitians’ rights are often made. IJDH and BAI combine traditional legal strategies with organizing, emerging technology, and public advocacy to address the root causes of instability and poverty in Haiti. We fight for justice with routinely excellent legal work, but also with creativity, humility, inspiration and humor, and a supportive work culture. We effect broad changes with modest resources by nurturing large advocacy networks. 2018 Legal Internship IJDH seeks legal interns to work on advocacy and legal cases, including our groundbreaking work to hold the UN accountable for introducing cholera to Haiti, and other human rights projects on an as-needed basis […]

Cholera Victims to Protest as UN Security Council Lands in Haiti

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (New York and Boston): media@ijdh.org, +1-617-652-0876 Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (Port-au-Prince): brian@ijdh.org, +509-3701-9879 Cholera Victims to Protest as UN Security Council Lands in Haiti Call on UN to Deliver on Promised Response by MINUSTAH Withdrawal Wednesday, June 21, Boston, Port-au-Prince—Haitian cholera victims and their advocates called on the UN Security Council to deliver on the promise of a new, victim-centered approach to cholera during its visit to Haiti this week, by meeting directly with victims and committing to funding the $400 million initiative before MINUSTAH –the peacekeeping mission that caused the cholera epidemic—pulls out in October. “The UN’s apology and promises were promising in December,“ said Mario Joseph, Managing Attorney of the Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI) that has led the fight for justice for cholera victims. “But seven […]

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Institute for Justice & Democracy In Haiti
15 Newbury Street
Boston, MA 02116

Telephone: (617) 652-0876
General Inquiries: info@ijdh.org
Media Inquiries: media@ijdh.org


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