Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Brian Concannon, IJDH Executive Director, Well-Received at Whitman College

This article is about IJDH Executive Director, Brian Concannon who recently taught a one-credit course at Whitman College on the topic of human rights advocacy. Although he was initially worried that that his students would not be engaged in the subject area, his fears proved to be wrong. Brian’s students all had glowing reviews about both him and his course. Brian’s students found his work with Haiti to be fascinating. IJDH’s litigation against the UN for introducing cholera to Haiti and the work that IJDH does with local grassroots movements showed the class that Brian was not simply some “white man wrapped up in a white saviour complex.” In fact, one of Brian’s main takeaways for his students was to think critically about NGOs and humanitarian aid: While giving assistance to countries in need is well-intentioned and charitable, individuals need to think about the […]

Lessons From Haiti’s Earthquake to Nepal’s

In the wake of a devastating earthquake in Nepal, many are waiting to see whether aid organizations have learned anything from the botched response to Haiti’s 2010 quake. After a disaster, decisions made within the first 72 hours are crucial to the future direction of the response. This article describes lessons that should be learned from the response to Haiti’s earthquake, both by aid organizations and by journalists reporting on the situation. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. How Not to Report on an Earthquake Jonathan M. Katz, The New York Times Magazine April 28, 2015 As of Tuesday morning, exactly three days have passed since a 7.8-magnitude earthquake shook Nepal, killing thousands and leaving millions in need of help. In disaster response, the end of the first 72 hours is often considered an inflection […]

Farmers Pushed Off Land for Haiti Industrial Park

  The USAID-funded Caracol Industrial Park has been under fire for its failure to live up to the promises made after Haiti’s 2010 earthquake. This article sheds light on the failure from a different angle–the challenge to the self-sufficiency of Haiti’s farmers. Over 1,000 were forced off the land to make way for this Park, which is way outside the earthquake-affected area to begin with. If Haitian’s can’t feed themselves, they will continue to be dependent on foreign aid. Measuring success in Haiti Marie Clarke Brill, The Washington Post March 25, 2015 The March 21 front-page article “The Clinton effect: Light and shadow” rightly picked up on the failure of the Caracol Industrial Park but failed to mention the biggest scandal of this Clinton-championed project: More than 1,000 farmers were forced off their land with only a few days’ notice to make way […]

Dizaines de milliers toujours déplacées après 5 ans

Immédiatement après le tremblement de terre, le monde entier avait les yeux rivés sur Haïti. Aujourd’hui, il semble que le monde a oublié les dizaines de milliers de personnes qui sont toujours sans abri, dans les camps de fortune depuis 2010. Ces personnes traitent toujours avec les expulsions forcées et les mauvaises conditions sanitaires. Seulement des solutions de logement durables peuvent résoudre ce problème. Partie de l’article est ci dessous. Cliquez ICI pour le texte complet. Click HERE for the English version. Haïti. Cinq ans après le tremblement de terre dévastateur, des dizaines de milliers de personnes sont toujours sans logement Amnesty International 8 janvier 2015 Cinq ans après le séisme dévastateur qui a frappé Haïti en 2010, des dizaines de milliers de personnes n’ont toujours pas retrouvé de logement, et beaucoup de ceux qui ont tout perdu dans cette catastrophe se sentent […]

NGOs Need Sustainable Solutions, Especially for Cholera

Although many organizations poured into Haiti after the 2010 earthquake, the situation is almost always the same as it was pre-quake because their help was not sustainable. Those who built wells often neglected to monitor them or include mechanisms to keep the water clean, leaving the people at risk for cholera. Aid organizations need to focus more on sustainability in order to make a real impact in Haiti. Relief organizations need to think long-term, research shows Julia Glum, Medical Xpress August 5, 2014 When a magnitude-7.0 earthquake hit Haiti in 2010, the world wanted to help. People gave blood. Communities organized bake sales. International and nongovernmental organizations visited the area to dig wells and provide access to safe water. But University of Florida researchers say NGOs dropped the ball by not providing the long-term follow-through needed for their assistance projects to be […]

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