On February 13th, a fire killed thirteen children and two adult caretakers at a "children's home" that the U.S based Church of Bible Understanding supported in Haiti. I want to be clear that there are some faith-based groups doing heroic work for health, education, and social justice in Haiti. There are, however, as many unscruplous organisations who see children as a way to fund-raise salaries, overhead, while providing little for the kids themselves. Orphanages are money-makers and thus are plentiful, numbering oven 700. Many of these children are abused and exploited in the name of God and money. If these organisations were really interested in helping, they would make familly planning available so parents have no more children than they want or can afford, would support families to take care of the children they already have, and expand adoption/foster networks for children who have no family to take them in. The church refuses to comment on the allegations of children who have come forward to say they were abused. The full article by AP journalists Michael Weissenstein and Ben Fox follows.
Benjamin Skinner wrote an article in Foreign Policy about the modern face of human slavery. According to Skinner, there are now more slaves on the planet than at any time in human history. He states true abolition will elude us until: (1) we admit the massive scope of the problem; (2) attack it in all its forms; and (3) and empower slaves to help free themselves. Even in Haiti, the only country to have led a successful slave rebellion, slavery thrives. Slavery has many gusies and "restaveks" are just one.