How Traffickers Exploit Children in Haiti's Orphanages

  • Posted on: 21 November 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

If someone, be it an individual or a politician, supports a project in Haiti it is usually an orphanage. The problem is that orphanages in Haiti are a business albeit one with almost no oversight and accountability.  The vast majority of the children in orphanages have at least one parent. The smarter investments would be promoting access to family planning so families have only as many children as they can afford and establishing a foster care network throughout the country so that children can be in safe family environments instead.  This is not to say all orphanages are bad - but there is a better way and the Haitian government has failed to protect children from the abuse, sexual and otherwise, that often takes place in these institutions.  More information follows in a CNN Freedom Project article by Lisa Cohen.  

Haitian Orphanages Hotspots for Child Trafficking and Abuse

  • Posted on: 25 June 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Individuals and groups give more than $70 million in donations every year to hundreds of orphanages in Haiti.  However, these orphanages vary wildly in terms of accountability - some are well-managed while others abuse and exploit children.  Children in orphanages should have their rights respected and opportunities for a better future.  It is important to remember though that most childen in Haitian orphanages are not orphans.  They are children from large families that could not afford to take care of them.  If their parents had consistent access to family planning, there would be far less need for orphanages in the first place.  Children's Rights NGO Lumos advises that funding would be better spent on helping Haiti to develop a proper foster care and adoption system.  The full article on this subject by Anastasia Moloney of the Reuters Foundation follows. 

“Voices of Haiti” Performance in Washington DC (7/25/2012 – 7/26/2012)

  • Posted on: 12 July 2012
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

The Pulitzer Center and Population Services International (PSI) will hold “Voices of Haiti”, a performance concerning the ongoing consequences of the earthquake, at the Corcoran Gallery of Art on July 25th and 26th.  It will feature a documentary, poetry, music, photography, and reporting from a variety of sources. Voices of Haiti has previously been screened in Port-au-Prince and Miami.  More information follows below.  

U.S. State Department Releases 2011 Human Rights Report for Haiti

  • Posted on: 24 May 2012
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

The U.S. State Department Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) is mandated to release annual country-specific human rights reports that address individual, civil, political, and worker rights, as set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  The 2011 Haiti Human Rights Report is copied below.  Haiti's development depends in large part upon the extent to which human rights are protected, especially for the vulnerable.  That takes the engagement of civil society and a government with the capacity and political will to do so.  As the report makes clear, much remains to be done before we get there.