A woman digs with a machete as she builds a temporary home in a spontaneous camp for quake survivors being established in Croix-des-Bouguets, Haiti, north of the capital Port-au-Prince. Quake survivors continue to move as aftershocks continue, and reports of aid deliveries in one camp will provoke families from other camps to migrate there.
A woman digs with a machete as she builds a temporary home in a spontaneous camp for quake survivors being established in Croix-des-Bouguets, Haiti, north of the capital Port-au-Prince. Photo Credit: Paul Jeffrey

In the wake of the devastating January 2010 earthquake, the United States government pledged a total of U.S. $4 billion to Haiti for humanitarian relief assistance, reconstruction and development aid. Since its allocation, much of this aid has failed to reach the populations that need it the most. According to the Government Accountability Office, nearly 50% of allocated foreign aid remains unspent, and of the funds deployed, less than 1% of aid went directly to the Haitian government. Meanwhile, the U.S. government prioritized foreign contractors (60% of which were Washington DC-area firms) while less than 1.5% of contracts went to Haitian companies.

Since 2010, the HAWG has advocated for rigorous accountability and transparency in U.S. foreign aid to Haiti, as well as participatory mechanisms that measure the effectiveness of aid among vulnerable populations.   Following three years of Hill-focused advocacy in summer 2014, our coalition facilitated a major victory when the United States Congress passed the Assessing Progress in Haiti Act (APHA), a bill that increases oversight of USAID’s operations in Haiti. Since the passage of this legislation, the HAWG has worked with Congress and the Administration to ensure that APHA is thoroughly implemented.

The HAWG believes that consultation and coordination with domestic Haitian organizations and the Government of Haiti is critical to successful development, and advocates for systematic documentation of aid disbursement to ensure aid accountability and efficacy.

Recent News:

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Aid Accountability and Transparency, Elections and Democracy, Gender & Human Rights

With New Global Fragility Act, US Must Avoid Past Mistakes and Let Haitians Control Their Own Democracy

HAWG members have been organizing and participating in consultations with the U.S. government surrounding the implementation process for the Global Fragility Act, a framework now called “Strategy to Prevent Conflict and Promote Stability” (SPCPS). This hopefully fruitful work will continue in coming months.

HAWG member IJDH staffer Sasha Filippova just published this op-ed on the hopes and cautions of this work. Read More

Aid Accountability and Transparency, Report

Report from CEPR: Twelve Years After Haiti’s Devastating Earthquake, New Report Recommends Key USAID Reforms

From HAWG member Center for Economic and Policy Research comes the public release of this critical report.

Washington, DC — Twelve years after the 2010 earthquake that devastated Haiti, a new report from the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) examines US aid failures in Haiti, identifies several core reasons why US aid has not resulted in measurable and lasting improvements, and proposes several reforms that could be made to how the US Agency for International Development (USAID) operates in Haiti. Read More

Aid Accountability and Transparency

Op-ed: International response to Haiti’s earthquake must avoid 2010 mistakes

International response to Haiti’s earthquake must avoid 2010 mistakes

From Brian Concannon and Kathleen Bergin, contributing to The Hill

Excerpt

As the death toll and displacement from Saturday’s earthquake in Haiti mounts, the United States must urgently mobilize to provide help. But we must, just as urgently, resolve to avoid mistakes we made following the 2010 earthquake that left Haiti even more dependent on foreign aid. Read More

Aid Accountability and Transparency, Food Crisis, Food Sovereignty, Gender & Human Rights

Can Haiti’s Peanut Value Chain Survive US Generosity?

Research by PAPDA (the Haitian Advocacy Platform for Alternative Development) and Oxfam found that peanut value chain actors in Haiti face a number of serious constraints, including nonexistence of state support; weak organization; use of traditional production methods; and lack of access to irrigation and inputs, including herbicides to control aflatoxin, all in a context of poverty and vulnerable livelihoods. Read More

Aid Accountability and Transparency, Food Sovereignty, Report

Oxfam publishes assessment of AVANSE

USAID’s AVANSE Project in Haiti: An assessment of its conformity with aid effectiveness principles.

In 2013, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) launched Appui à la Valorisation du Potentiel Agricole du Nord, pour la Sécurité Économique et Environnementale—Aid to Realize the Agricultural Potential of the North, for Economic and Environmental Security, or AVANSE—in northern Haiti. Read More

Aid Accountability and Transparency, Gender & Human Rights, Report

Gender Action report on IFI spending in Haiti

New Gender Report on IFI Spending in Haiti

Gender Justice Scorecard: IFIs in Haiti analyzes the gender sensitivity of Inter-American Development Bank and World Bank investments from 2013-17. The two IFIs spent nearly $1.5 billion in Haiti during this period, substantially less than during 2010-13 following the 2010 earthquake (see our report Building Back by Half or BBBH). Read More

Aid Accountability and Transparency, Report, Uncategorized

1804 Institute launches new report on corruption

Stronger Institutions in Haiti: Can transparency and accountability make a difference in Haiti?

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Corruption! Embezzlement! Poverty! The Senate’s report on Petro Caribe provides a glimpse into the depth of the culture of corruption that seems to have characterized Haiti’s governance for the past ten years. This is a crucial time for Haitians to begin a serious dialogue about the role that transparency and accountability can play in strengthening their public institutions. Read More

Aid Accountability and Transparency, Report

Review of “Progress Report” on Haiti

New Release from CEPR

For Immediate Release: December 20, 2016
Contact: Dan Beeton, (202) 239-1460

Washington, DC —
A new paper from the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) and the Haiti Advocacy Working Group (HAWG) reviews reports released by the US State Department on contracts for Haiti aid and finds significant omissions and deficiencies, including incomplete data, a failure to link projects and outcomes, and a failure to adequately identify mistakes and lessons learned.
Read More