Community

d5tid: 
14

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. 

A Possible Future for Haiti

  • Posted on: 13 June 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Below is a recent article in the Economist about the current state of Hait's development.  The Canadian government funded the Copenhagen Consensus Center (CCC) think tank to study the impact of different policies in Haiti - what would they cost and what would have the greatest impact? The Haitian government can't do everything at once and the intent is to help it prioritize.  Interventions that come out on top include fortifying wheat flour with micrconutrients and reforming the electrical system.  Learn more at the CCC website which includes a PPT presentation on the top ten proposed interventions.  

Haitian Women Press for Recognition From U.N. Peacekeeper Fathers

  • Posted on: 2 June 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

As the UN Peackeeping Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) winds down, it leaves a mixed legacy - less insecurit and better police along with an ongoing cholera epidemic and a number of Haitian women who became pregnant by U.N peacekeepers. Reuters journalist Makini Brice notes in her article below that while the United Nations has a "zero tolerance" policy on sexual exploitation and abuse, peacekeepers move on while their children grow up without any support. Haitian lawyers intend to file law suits although the timing is unclear.  The United Nations has a long track record of promising but under-delivering on accountability in peace-keeping operations - how these women are treated will be an indicator of whether anything has changed. 

Haitians Get Six Months of Protection From Deportation

  • Posted on: 23 May 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

The current administration has granted undocumented Haitians in the United States an additional six months of Temporary Protected Status (TPS), protecting them from deportation...at least for now.  The Department of Homeland Security has warned that this may be the final six months of TPS and Haitians should prepare for return.  It is difficult to imagine how Haiti can absorb 60,000 returnees at this point in time - especially those who would be returning to the hurricane affected Grande Anse.  Due in large part to Hurricane Matthew, the economy is expected to contract ths year.  Additional information follows in a Miami Herald article by Jacqueline Charles below.  

Haitian Disney Employees May Have to Leave the United States

  • Posted on: 27 April 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Below is an article by Orlando Sentinel journalist Sandra Pedicini about the hundreds of Haitian Disney employees who will be forced to leave the United States should the government end their Temporary Protected Status (TPS). TPS was given to undocumented Haitians in the United States after the 2010 earthquake to protect them from deportation.  Advocates, as well as Senate Democrats, argue that the ongoing cholera epidemic and aftermath of Hurricane Matthew justify TPS.  Further, companies such as Disney are speaking out against the possibility of losing hard-working and dependable employees.   More information about TPS available at the USCIS website. 

Six Months After Hurricane, Food and Shelter Still Scarce

  • Posted on: 16 April 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Jacqueline Charles (Miami Herald) reminds us in her article below that life in communities struck by Hurricane Matthew six months ago remains difficult.  Food insecurity, which depends in large part on agriculture, is tenuous and replacement shelters have yet to be constructed.  The Haitian Government has been clear that it leads the recovery efforts although it is clear much remains to be done.  Beyond meeting food and shelter needs remains the challenging task of preparing for furture hurricanes to mitigate the damage they will cause. 

UN Expected to Wrap Up Haiti Peacekeeping Mission Mid-October

  • Posted on: 13 April 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

On Thursday, April 13 the United Nations Security Council is expected to pass a resolution extending the mandate of MINUSTAH for a final six months, during which its 2,370 military personnel will phase.  After, a smaller mission of 1,275 police officers will focus on training the Haitian National Police. The full article by Edith Lederer (AP) follows and more information is available on the MINUSTAH website

Haiti Joins Global Effort to End Statelessness

  • Posted on: 27 March 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Stateless persons are not recognized as citizens of any country.  They are often vulnerable to exploitation due to a lack of access to health care, education, work, and justice.  It is a major problem in the Dominican Republic where the the government has long been reluctant to grant citizenship to Dominicans of Haitian descent.  Last week, the Haitian Parliament voted to accede to the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, making it the third member state of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the 69th country in the world to do so.  The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) issued a statement praising Haiti for its committment. To become involved, consider joining UNHCR's "I Belong" Campaign to End Statelessness

U.S State Department Releases 2016 Human Rights Reports

  • Posted on: 4 March 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

The U.S State Department has released 2016 Human Rights Reports.  As in previous years, human right challenges in Haiti included weak democratic governance, inufficient respect for the rule of law, a deficient judicial system, and persistent corruption.  The good news is that it is clear where the shortcomings are and what the new government must do to improve.  There a wide range of partners who want to help including Haitian activists and organizations, other governemnts, and multilateral and non-governmental partners.  The 2016 Human Rights Report for Haiti follows. 

Haitian Government Creates Commission to Probe Prison Conditions

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

The Haitian Government has announced a commission to examine the country's prisons, which have long known to be over-crowded and unsafe.  Due to Haiti's weak justice system, most prisoners have not been convicted of crimes but are instead being held in pre-trial detention. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and other organizations have for many years tried to improve conditions in the prisons but lasting change requires governmental committment, planning, and resources.  For more information on Haiti, visit the World Prison Brief.  The full article by AP reported David McFadden follows. 

Pages