Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

UN humanitarian official speaks about gender-based violence on mission to Haiti

People’s Daily Online

Catherine Bragg, UN assistant secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and deputy emergency coordinator, spoke to Haitian women about the problem of gender-based violence (GBV) during a trip to the Caribbean country, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said here Tuesday.

Bragg visited the Tabarre Issa and Mais Gate camps for internally displaced persons (IDPs) who lost their homes due to the devastating Jan. 12 earthquake in Haiti, OCHA said in a press statement issued here.

During her visit, Bragg met with a women’s camp committee, where she consulted with committee members about GBV, which has become an increasing concern in the chaotic months following the natural disaster.

“We take this issue very seriously and want to make sure that the perpetrators will be held to account,” Bragg told the women.

Bragg said that there would be additional precautions taken by the UN to address GBV in the camps.

“We will continue to take measures such as installing more lighting in camps, providing specialist services to survivors of sexual violence while increasing the presence of peacekeepers to help discourage such acts,” she said.

Upon hearing the Haitian women indicate that more income opportunities would mean less vulnerability, Bragg told the women that the UN was working to address job creation as part of the recovery process.

Bragg’s trip to Haiti also included discussions with other earthquake survivors, humanitarian aid workers, camp community organizations and the UN Police (UNPOL).

She will also travel to Leogane, outside of Haiti’s capital of Port-au-Prince, to meet with local officials and more IDPs, the statement added.

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