Statement on Conditions in Haiti

February 15, 2019
By: 
The Office of Government Relations

The Episcopal Church expresses deep concern for the deteriorating conditions in Haiti, originating from both recent developments and ongoing, unaddressed issues. We are concerned by the recall of Haiti’s ambassador to the United States and by the impact of ongoing protests, now lasting for over a week, on daily life in Haiti. We also express support for Haitians’ right to call for good governance, justice and accountability.

Additionally, we are concerned about the humanitarian conditions in the country resulting from more prolonged issues namely, the rapidly deteriorating economic conditions, slow recovery from both the 2010 earthquake and Hurricane Matthew in 2016, food insecurity, increased local reporting of civilian deaths resulting from state security forces, evidence of corruption, and a failure to pursue accountability in these deaths and corruption.

General Convention in 2018 urged The Episcopal Church to call on “governments and civic institutions to be responsive, transparent, and participatory, and urge their governments to promote these principles of good governance globally,” and urged “all local, state, and national governments in the jurisdictions in which The Episcopal Church exists to address their role in contributing to domestic and international corruption… while also partnering with foreign governments, multilateral institutions, and multinational corporations to minimize corruption and encourage transparency.”

The United Nations Office for the High Commissioner of Human Rights recognizes the negative impact of corruption on the exercise of human rights. The Episcopal Church is concerned by the absence of the UN Human Rights Committee’s Independent Expert on Haiti, whose mandate was not renewed in 2017.

We ask for prayers for our brothers and sisters in the diocese and nation of Haiti—for relief of the current economic crisis and for their empowerment in civic participation. We also join in advanced prayer for the election of officials coming up later this year, that, by faithful administration and wise laws, the rights of all may be protected.

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