Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Accepting Applications for the Bertha Justice Fellowship 2021-2023

We are excited to announce the IJDH Bertha Justice Fellowship for 2021-2023. With the generous support of the Bertha Foundation, we are offering a two-year legal fellowship for an emerging lawyer committed to pursuing a career in public interest law. We are particularly interested in candidates who know Haiti and speak Haitian Creole and/or French, as the Fellow will work closely with the team at BAI in Haiti. Interested applicants should submit a cover letter, resume, short writing sample on a legal or policy topic, and contact information for two references electronically to by July 28, 2021. Please include “Bertha Fellow” in the subject line. Applications for the position will be reviewed on a rolling basis. Click HERE for more information on the fellowship and qualifications. Check out more about the Bertha Foundation here.

Human Rights and Rule of Law in Haiti: Key Recent Developments, November 2020 through May 2021

PDF Version in English. Human Rights and Rule of Law in Haiti: November 2020 through May 2021 Introduction The seven month period following IJDH’s October 2020 Human Rights and Rule of Law in Haiti update[i] has been marked by increasing authoritarian actions by the government that have furthered concerns for the rule of law,[ii] including an unconstitutional exercise to change the constitution through referendum.[iii] A remarkable number of people in Haiti, including civil society groups,[iv] have courageously demonstrated against the continuation of the democratic crisis and have demanded respect for the rule of law.[v] Many of these widespread demonstrations have been suppressed by the police through violent means[vi] while catastrophic insecurity, primarily comprised of attacks against civilians by armed actors and kidnappings, continues.[vii] Threats to judicial independence[viii] and impunity for these and other human rights violations[ix] additionally contribute to a deteriorating […]

Landmark Win in UN Sexual Exploitation and Abuse Case: Court Orders Child Support for Child Fathered by UN Peacekeeper

A local court orders UN peacekeeper to pay 350,000 gourdes per month (approx. $4,600 USD) in child support. Read the judgment here. Read coverage on the landmark win in The New Humanitarian, World Magazine, Rezo Nòdwès, VICE World News, and Reuters.

IACHR Public Hearing on Impunity for Human Rights Violations and Lack of Judicial Independence in Haiti

Civil Society and Government of Haiti discuss impunity and lack of judicial independence in Haiti before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.  On Human Rights Day, December 10, 2020, BAI and IJDH, along with two experienced Haitian legal practitioners, presented evidence to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) on the subject of impunity for human rights violations and judicial dysfunction in Haiti. The Commission had called this public hearing in response to the BAI and IJDH’s Request (EN/FR); Haiti’s ambassador to the United States and to the Organization of American States (OAS) likewise participated. Written Submissions of IJDH and BAI List of Participants Report on Proceedings Video of Proceedings (in original Spanish, French, and English) MEDIA AND RECENT DEVELOPMENTS La CIDH s’intéresse à l’accès à la justice et l’indépendance judiciaire en Haïti, Patrick Saint-Pré, Le Nouvelliste, 10, 2020 On […]

Marking 20 Years Since the Raboteau Massacre Convictions

“Down with impunity” Twenty years ago today (on November 16, 2000), a Haitian court convicted 37 men for their roles in the 1994 Raboteau massacre – a violent attack by government forces on a civilian neighborhood associated with political opposition to the governing regime – in absentia. Yet, none of these men have served time pursuant to their sentences. None have contributed to the award issued by the court in favor of the Raboteau massacre victims who intervened as civil parties to the case.  Haitian law requires that any individuals convicted in absentia be arrested upon returning to Haiti and either accept the conviction issued against them or request and participate in renewed proceedings. In a positive step, the government has been detaining former death squad leader Emmanuel “Toto” Constant – the founder and head of a paramilitary group complicit […]

Human Rights and Rule of Law in Haiti: Key Recent Developments

PDF Version in English and French. Human Rights and Rule of Law in Haiti: March to October 2020 Introduction Widespread insecurity has gripped Haiti[i] since our February 2020 Human Rights and Rule of Law in Haiti update.[ii] Local human rights organizations investigating the rise in violence have documented the involvement of police officers and state officials in numerous attacks against marginalized communities and raised credible concerns that gang violence is being deployed as a tool of political repression.[iii] At minimum, the government has failed to control violence that affects some of Haiti’s most marginalized communities.[iv] In addition, there are numerous reported incidents of government violence against protesters and the press;[v] impunity for these and other human rights violations, due at least in part to the politicization of the judiciary, is pervasive.[vi] Such impunity leaves victims without recourse and is emboldening perpetrators.[vii] […]

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

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