HAWG members IJDH and BAI recently released a press release stating that Broken UN Promises Lead to Haiti Cholera. In this piece, the two organizations call out the UN for their failure to keep their promise of investing $400 million to cover the cholera epidemic.
Since its outbreak in 2010, the UN-imported cholera has killed over 10,000 people and infected nearly 1 million between 2010 and 2019. Although the UN has publicly apologized and acknowledged its role in the spread of this disease, Haiti’s civil society argues that these actions are not enough.
In January 2022, the UN congratulated Haiti on three years cholera-free, but many health and human rights experts argued that the celebration was too premature. Sadly, the country now has confirmed new recent cholera patients including specific spread among children and in prisons. In the midst of an ongoing governance crisis, rising fuel prices, and rising insecurity, the international community has been discussing whether an international intervention is needed in Haiti and this piece strongly states to its readers that “Cholera’s resurgence in Haiti is a stark reminder of the costs of unaccountable international intervention in Haiti.” Overall, this quote by Beatrice Lindstrom, Clinical Instructor and Lecturer on Law at Harvard Law School, accurately summarizes the sentiments of the press release, “As the body that is responsible for bringing cholera to Haiti, the UN has a legal responsibility to eliminate it and compensate victims for the harms suffered”.