Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Quarterly Newsletter: Winter 2013

BAI & IJDH Quarterly Newsletter

Winter 2013

Who We Are

Your Generosity Keeps Us Fighting for Justice

The Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI), the largest and most successful public interest law firm in Haiti, and the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (IJDH), a Boston-based human rights nonprofit, work with the peo­ple of Haiti in their non-violent strug­gle for the con­sol­i­da­tion of con­sti­tu­tional democ­racy, jus­tice, and human rights by pur­su­ing legal cases, dis­trib­ut­ing infor­ma­tion on human rights con­di­tions in Haiti, and coop­er­at­ing with human rights and sol­i­dar­ity groups in Haiti and abroad.

Follow @BAIhaiti and @IJDH on Twitter and Like and Share our Facebook page.

Duvalier Prosecution

Jean-Claude Duva­lier must not be allowed to evade jus­tice in Haiti

For­mer Hait­ian dictator Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duva­lier’s case for crimes against humanity is currently up for appeal. BAI and IJDH lawyers are working hard to help a group of survivors and families of victims of torture, ille­gal exe­cu­tions and enforced dis­ap­pear­ances dur­ing Duvalier’s time in power (1971–1986) request that the Court over­turn a pre­vi­ous deci­sion not to inves­ti­gate the for­mer leader’s alleged respon­si­bil­ity for the crimes due to expiration of statute of limitations.  IJDH live tweeted from the court last week and the New York Times quotes us.

“Inter­na­tional human rights stan­dards are very clear in cases such as this. Crimes includ­ing tor­ture, exe­cu­tions, arbi­trary deten­tion and enforced dis­ap­pear­ances are not sub­ject to a statute of lim­i­ta­tions and the alleged per­pe­tra­tors can­not ben­e­fit from par­dons nor amnesties,” said Javier Zúñiga, Spe­cial Advi­sor at Amnesty International, “With the case of Jean Claude Duva­lier, it is the whole cred­i­bil­ity of the Hait­ian jus­tice sys­tem which is at stake. Only by respect­ing the pro­ce­dures in the appeal case . . . will the Court be able to demon­strate the pro­fes­sion­al­ism and inde­pen­dence of the Hait­ian jus­tice sys­tem.”

Jean-Claude Duva­lier returned to Haiti from 25 years exile in France in Jan­u­ary 2011. He was then indicted by the Hait­ian author­i­ties for embez­zle­ment, theft of pub­lic funds, and crimes against human­ity – includ­ing tor­ture, exe­cu­tions, arbi­trary deten­tion and enforced dis­ap­pear­ances – carried out between 1971 and 1986.

To learn more about the Duvalier Prosecution, click HERE


A Step in the Right Direction

Since October 2010, over 8,000 Haitians have been killed by the deadly cholera epidemic that was brought to Haiti by UN troops. With your help, IJDH and BAI are getting justice for the cholera victims.

You and over 28,000 individuals (and counting!) signed a petition launched by Oliver Stone calling on UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon to respond justly to the UN’s responsibility for the cholera. Our fight for justice was endorsed by the Boston Globe, and recently covered by NPR and the BBC.

Thanks to you, all this pressure is working. On December 11, 2012 Secretary-General Ban announced that the UN would join the $2.2 billion Cholera Free Hispaniola Initiative, which aims to eliminate cholera through investments in healthcare, public education, and clean water and sanitation infrastructure. The announcement is an important step- if implemented, it will save 4,000 lives per year. But it is only 10% funded. We need to keep applying pressure until poor Haitians are drinking clean water.

To learn more about Cholera Accountability Project , click HERE.


Immigration Advocacy

On October 1, 2012, the DHS extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haitians in the US to July 22, 2014, protecting Haitian nationals who came to the US in the wake of January 2010’s devastating earthquake from deportation. Haitians with TPS had two months to re-register, but Hurricane Sandy, which struck in late October, shut down the administrative infrastructure of regions where many Haitians in America reside. Thanks to the collective work of IJDH and a broad range of advocates, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on December 27, 2012 that they would extend the re-registration period to January 29, 2013. This extension helped many Haitians follow the procedures that allow them to live and work in the United States.

To learn more about our Immigration Advocacy, click HERE

RYOT Matching Gifts

Help us raise $5,000 by tomorrow!

RYOT News is matching all donations made to IJDH through their site from now through Friday 2/15 at 3:00pm EST. This is the perfect opportunity to make your gift of $10 become $20… $25 become $50… and $100 become $200. It all adds up–supporters like you donated $1270 so far, which doubles to $2,540! Please help us raise $5,000 by tomorrow at 3pm EST! Donate here:

Thank you for supporting the fight for justice!

Quick Links

Our Website   Donate Now   Subscribe   Volunteer   Events

666 Dorchester Avenue | Boston, MA 02127 |
(617) 652-0876 | |

Recent Articles and Reports


A Legal Solution for Haiti  MA Lawyers Weekly Highlight on IJDH Director Brian Concannon


How Human Rights Can Save Haiti By Fran Quigley, JD, Indiana University


Justice Undone By Alok Pokharel, IJDH Legal Intern


A System Put to the Test By Brian Concannon, IJDH Director


Conveyors Recognizes Third Anniversary of Devastating Haitian Earthquake Press Release


Forty-Eight Civil Society Groups Appeal to UN Secretary-General for Response to Haiti Cholera Claims Press Release


Organizational Updates


We are proud to announce that the Boston Network for International Development has chosen IJDH as its featured organization for the month of February! BNID connects organizations in the Greater Boston area through events, mailing lists, social media, and job and internship opportunities to discuss and promote international development. We are very grateful of the support we have received from BNID and encourage our supporters to check them out. For more information on this wonderful organization:

New Website Launch

Both IJDH and the wonderful design team from New York City College of Technology, CUNY led by Professor Dan Wong have been working diligently to create a brand new website experience. We are working on the final touches of the newly designed website, and are planning to debut the site this spring.
Keep checking Facebook and Twitter for the latest updates.


Get Involved


Looking for a way to become involved with IJDH? Now’s your chance to host your very own screening of Baseball in the Time of Cholera! Invite friends, family and coworkers to watch this award-winning film and discuss the cholera epidemic that is still running rampant in Haiti. Interested? Click HERE or contact for more information.


Contact IJDH

Institute for Justice & Democracy In Haiti
867 Boylston Street, 5th Floor
Boston, MA 02116

Telephone: (857)-201-0991
General Inquiries:
Media Inquiries: