Haitian Studies Association

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Mid-March Update on the Situation in Haiti (Mar. 22, 2024)


View Recorded Live Stream (Kreyòl Original)


View Recorded Live Stream (English Interpretation)


The Haitian Studies Association is holding a webinar with scholars and activists to help understand what is happening on the ground.

Since our last webinar on March 8, 2024 de facto Prime Minister Ariel Henry has agreed to step down. The various political parties are sending their nominees as part of the transitional presidential council. The attacks are ongoing and the number of deaths are increasing. People are suffering from hunger and displacement amidst the rampant violence. The majority of international organizations workers have left. The U.S. have chartered a plane for U.S. citizens that arrived in Miami this past weekend and last week it sent military forces to protect its embassy. On March 19, Gen. Laura Richardson might have stated that the US Southern Command is “prepared,” with reports by the Southern Command acknowledging that US troops might [already] be stationed in the Caribbean nation. In the meanwhile, Haitians in Haiti continue to live in a state of non-stop violence.

Panelists will discuss what is happening right now in Haiti and offer updates about steps being taken to put in place a transitional government.


PANELISTS:

Islanda Micherline Aduel

La politicologue Islanda Micherline Aduel de l’organisation haïtienne Têt Kole, partenaire du CCFD-Terre Solidaire, défend les droits des paysannes et des paysans dont les terres sont accaparées au profit notamment de l’agroindustrie avec pour conséquence directe de nuire à la souveraineté et à la sécurité alimentaire des paysans. Benjamine d’une fratrie de 4, Islanda a toujours été inspirée par sa mère paysanne et n’a jamais cessé de défendre les droits de autres «Haïti c’est mon pays. C’est mon héritage ». Elle milite au sein d’organizations paysannes, notamment Tèt Kole Ti Peyizan Ayisyen où elle est sert de coordinatrice pour le movement des jeunes. Sa devise est qu’ « ensemble, les paysans, paysannes, sont plus forts ».

Elle a étudié le droit et les sciences politiques et poursuit maintenant une maîtrise en Developpement Territorial avec une spécialité sur l’Amérique Latine et les Caraïbes à UNEPSS (Universidade Estadual Paulista São Paulo). Elle continue d’être active à travers le movement San Tè (MST) au Brésil où elle milite sans relâche. Elle travaille même à distance pour défendre les droits des producteurs locaux haïtiens et pour améliorer leur conditions de vie en Haïti et globalement.


Georges Eddy Lucien

Georges Eddy Lucien completed his undergraduate studies in the social sciences and mathematics departments of the École Normale Supérieure of Port-au-Prince from the State University of Haiti . He has a degree in geography with an emphasis on urban planning. He holds a master’s degree in geography with a speciality in Planning and a master’s degree in geography with specialties in Cities and Territory and Territoriality from the University of the Antilles and Guyana (UAG). He completed his doctoral studies in Urban history at the University of Toulouse-Le-Mirail and was a postdoctoral fellow in urban studies at the University of Quebec in Montreal.

Georges Eddy Lucien is professor of history and urban geography at the State University of Haiti and directs the dynamic laboratory of American worlds (LADMA) of this university. Dr. Lucien also directs the Master’s Program in Geography at the Ecole Normale Supérieure and co-directs the History department at the Université d’Etat d’Haïti.  At Quisqueya University, he teaches and directs the Center for Research and Support for Urban Policies. He is the author of several works including Une modernisation manquée, Port-au-Prince 1915-1956, Volume 1: modernisation et centralisation” (2013). He won the Barbancourt Prix for his book Little Haïti, Si loin de Dieu et si près du centre-ville de Miami (2015).


Michelle Austin Pamies 

Michelle Austin Pamies is a partner at Austin Pamies Norris Weeks, LLC.  Her practice primarily involves providing legal counsel to business clients and representing them in their corporate, commercial, real estate, and intellectual property transactions and related litigation. She also focuses on assisting US individuals and entities with litigation and/or transactions in Haiti. In addition, she serves as outside Assistant City Attorney for several South Florida municipalities and serves as special counsel to others. Her background includes being General Counsel for the Agency for Workforce Innovation, an agency of the State of Florida, General Counsel for an automotive retail holding company with revenues of over $6 billion, Corporate Counsel and Senior Corporate Counsel – Commercial Law for a fortune 100 company, and Associate at one of the largest of the largest US law firms.

Michelle is a former member of the Public Health Trust of Miami-Dade County, and Miami-Dade County Ad Hoc Committee for the Creation of an Airport Authority.  She has served on numerous non-profit boards, including, Girls Inc. and SantLa (Haitian Neighborhood Center). She is a founding member and former Vice President of the Haitian Lawyers Association, Inc. and is a current Co-Chair of the Women of Color Empowerment Institute, Inc. (WOCEI), a membership organization with the mission to enhance and expand leadership opportunities for women of color. WOCEI spearheads a yearly conference that brings together hundreds of women in leadership. Michelle is a 1996 Magna Cum Laude graduate of the University of Miami School of Law where she served on the University of Miami Law Review and was a member of the Order of the Coif, Phi Delta Phi, and Omicron Delta Kappa.


Wideline Pierre

Wideline Pierre was born in Ouanaminthe, a commune in the Nord-Est department in 1978. Coming from a family of 7 children of which she was the 5th, she completed her primary and secondary education in her hometown. She did her university studies in the Dominican Republic at the Autonomous University of Santo Domingo where she studied architecture. Very attached to the country where she was born, she returned to Haiti where she resides until today.

Back home, she practiced her profession as an architect and positioned herself as an environmental activist and human rights defender. Member of the Cabinet of the Minister of the Environment, she temporarily left her position to run as a candidate in the 2015 legislative elections, where she finished in 3rd position. Following the elections, she was appointed to the position of Deputy Departmental Director at the Ministry of the Environment in the Nord’Est department. In June 2022 she was promoted to Director of the said Directorate, and resigned during the same year in protest against the decision of the Haitian government to open the Haitian-Dominican border following a popular movement in which she took part.

Daughter of a farmer, Wideline Pierre is attached to the land and the peasantry as well as to the cause of this vulnerable group of people. Today she has become spokesperson for the movement and the committee for the construction of the irrigation canal on the Massacre River. Wideline Pierre is convinced that the energy machine that has been set in motion around the canal will help us build a country where life is beautiful.


Michel Soukar

Educateur émérite, directeur d’établissements, journaliste politique, historien, homme de lettres, le Professeur Michel Soukar est l’une de nos personnalités les mieux connues en Haiti, et pour sa plume et pour sa militance. Entre autres positions, il a été rédacteur au Petit Samedi Soir et co-Fondateur et Secrétaire-Général de l’Association des Ecrivains Haïtiens. Dans le domaine littéraire, il est responsable depuis 2013 de la collection « Textes Retrouvés » aux Editions C3. Depuis cette même année, il devient aussi responsable des émissions d’éducation à Radio Signal FM et correspondant de Radio Haïti Amérique Internationale (Boca Raton – Floride. Il est le producteur et réalisateur de plus de 800 émissions radiophoniques sur l’Histoire d’Haïti, la politique et l’économie internationale sur les ondes de Radio Signal FM (Pétion-Ville, Haïti) en plus d’être l’auteur de plus de 25 volumes importants et de plusieurs CDs portant sur l’histoire et la politique en Haïti.

Reconnu internationalement comme écrivain militant de grande distinction et comme historien engagé, et ayant reçu nombres d’accolades pour ces œuvres tant en Haiti qu’à l’étranger ainsi que de nombreuses invitations de gouvernements progressistes, le Professeur Michel Soukar est un politicologue incontournable pour toutes études et analyses sur Haiti. Il offre de courageuses analyses sur notre complexe histoire et expose les failles d’un système politique décadent et d’une société branlante et inéquitable tout en continuant à nous donner espoir qu’une Haïti meilleure est possible.


MODERATOR:

François Pierre-Louis Jr.

François Pierre-Louis PhD is professor and chair of political science at Queens College, City University of New York. His research interests include immigration, transnationalism, Haitian and Caribbean politics. He served in the private cabinet of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide in 1991 and on the senior staff of Prime Minister Jacques-Édouard Alexis in 2007-2008. He is the author of Haitians in New York City: Transnationalism and Hometown Association (2006), co-editor of Migrant Crossroads: Globalization, Incorporation and Placemaking in Queens New York (Temple University 2021). His articles have appeared in US Catholics, Wadabagei, the Journal of Haitian Studies, Education and Urban Society, The Journal of Health and Human Services Administration, Latin America Perspectives, and the Journal of Black Studies. He served as a senior advisor for the Haiti-CUNY Program to the Chancellor of the City University of New York from 2011 to 2015.


Mèsi anpil/ Thank you very much to our interpreters: Lourdes Leconte & Rose Nicholson