Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Hold UN Accountable For Haiti’s Cholera Outbreak

By Myrtha Désulmé, The Gleaner On August 24, Tropical Storm Isaac pummelled Haiti, resulting in floods, mudslides, storm surges, downed trees and power lines. The storm threatened the lives of millions, particularly the more than 400,000 homeless Haitians still living in flimsy tents, exposed to the elements like sitting ducks, two and half years after the January 2010 earthquake. Painful images of tent dwellers bracing against fierce winds, with a backdrop of flying tents containing all of their worldly possessions, were streamed on CNN between news of another United States shooting incident, and the joys of Australian river rafting. Adding to the crisis was the fear of an ensuing surge of the cholera epidemic introduced into Haiti by the United Nations (UN) forces. On October 21, 2010, ten months after the greatest natural disaster of the modern age, cholera exploded in the Artibonite […]

The truth behind the numbers: Why Haiti Did Not Dodge a Bullet with Tropical Storm Isaac?

Angela Bruce Raeburn, Oxfam America August 31, 2012  The aftermath of Tropical Storm Isaac in Haiti. Photo by Stephania Musset. As Tropical Storm Isaac dumped torrential rains on Haiti this past weekend, many found a silver lining in the fact that only 24 Haitians died. True, it could have been much worse. Haiti continues to suffer from the effects of the devastating 2010 earthquake, and Isaac could have been yet another major catastrophe. But the effects of Isaac will be felt for quite some time and could result in a much higher death toll. Haiti did not dodge a bullet. Agriculture losses, a looming cholera crisis, and homelessness are the real numbers behind Isaac. And what will happen the next time a tropical storm passes through Haiti if people remain displaced without adequate housing? Agriculture provides employment for half the national workforce and makes up 28 […]

In Haiti, Tropical Storm Isaac sparks cholera fears

 Jacqueline Charles, The Miami Herald  September 6, 2012 The panic began to set in after Tropical Storm Isaac’s rains had subsided and the sun finally began to shine on this storm-damaged beachfront hamlet. Frantz Pierre-Louis, looking at the trail of fallen trees and flooded farms confronting him, had something much more pressing on his mind. “We have to prevent a cholera outbreak,” Pierre-Louis, sitting in his pick-up truck, said, his voice filled with urgency. Just when Haiti thought it had cholera under control, Tropical Storm Isaac came along. The storm left at least 24 dead in Haiti, and reignited fears that the floods and rains could accelerate a peak in cholera deaths and infections. Even worse, the deadly diarrheal disease could spread to the sprawling tent cities in Haiti’s capital where 390,000 victims of the January 2010 earthquake still live and […]

Remember Haiti? Its people are still exposed to storm dangers

Sandra Hernandez, The Los Angeles Times August 30, 2012 Isaac could have been worse, but more than 350,000 Haitians left homeless by the 2010 quake still live in tents. Haitians living in a tent camp wait out Tropical Storm Isaac as it barrels through Port-Au-Prince. (Thony Belizaire / AFP / Getty Images / August 25, 2012) On its way to disrupting the Republican National Convention in Florida and several days before it made landfall in Louisiana, Hurricane Isaac narrowly missed delivering another catastrophic blow to Haiti, still recovering from the January 2010 earthquake that left thousands dead and briefly — too briefly — focused international attention on that country’s many troubles. Isaac did not claim thousands of lives, as feared, and it quickly moved on to more newsworthy locales. But for those of us who were in Haiti, it offered a stark reminder […]

Tropical Storm Isaac’s Destruction Another “Unnatural Disaster” in Haiti

Institute for Public Accuracy August 27, 2012 AP reports at least eight deaths from tropical storm Issac in Haiti. Over 30 groups working on Haiti have set up the Under Tents campaign in working to ensure housing. The groups state that many of Haiti’s problems are not “natural disasters,” but are the result of policies that become increasingly glaring as Haiti faces more storms this season. Among the groups in the campaign: JEAN CLAUDE FIGNOLE, via Patricia Brooks, patricia.brooks at actionaid.org Country director at ActionAid Haiti, who witnessed the storm from Port-au-Prince Fignole said today: “Tropical storm Isaac is not the only cause of disruption in Haiti. One in five Haitians right now is at risk of forced eviction. Many of these evicted families who ended up homeless are now bracing the terror of another storm season. The Haitian government must put a […]

Isaac leaves death, destruction in Haiti

Jacqueline Charles, The Miami Herald August, 27, 2012 As Isaac heads into the Gulf, the death toll continues to rise. The storm left at least eight dead in Haiti and two dead in the Dominican Republic. JACMEL, Haiti — Before setting its sights on Cuba and South Florida, Tropical Storm Isaac left at least 19 Haitians dead and cut a path of destruction through Jacmel and other southeastern Haitian cities, toppling billboards, partially collapsing roads and burying blown over fruit trees in muddy flood waters. Residents in this lush, seaside village remained without power and cut off from neighboring mountain hamlets Sunday as the rains from Isaac finally subsided. “Look at it,” farmer Estlange Cherry, 21, said pointing to his family farm where his father in-law was clearing away fallen plantain and breadfruit trees. “Everything is gone. We weren’t able to […]

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