"Every Time Aid Comes, It Stops at the Top," by Mark Snyder

One of the stars of our film Haiti: Where Did the Money Go?, Mark Snyder, just wrote this blog post. Check out the piece and check out his organization, International Action Ties. “Every Time Aid Comes, It Stops at the Top”

PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI---Grace Village is a camp in Port-au-Prince that has now about 500 families—a few hundred reportedly have fled since receiving pressure from the purported landowner to leave.

The displace earthquake survivors have had verbal threats, physical violence (including rocks thrown and beatings), shelters destroyed, and aid blocked or sold to them as means of “encouraging” them to leave the camp. The purported landowner is a religious leader named Pastor Joel. Last Friday, he removed the large door at the entrance of the camp, which many families told me removed the few feelings of security that remained.

Other forced eviction tactics have included the Haitian National Police, which has gone into the camp and fired their weapons in the air. The US-based church groups that provide aid for the camp continue to support Pastor Joel, although hopefully without knowledge of his eviction activities.

The Haitian housing rights group, FRAKKA has been organizing with the camp members and informing them of their rights. The Haitian public interest law office Bureau des Avocats Internationaux is supporting their legal battle. Both are assisting with the organization of the camp members to resist the forced eviction and the violation of their rights.

--Mark Snyder, www.undertentshaiti.com