Pray for Haiti as Civil Unrest Continues

Posted by
on March 19th, 2021

As time has passed since I started The Brian Young Foundation and joined Haiti’s efforts towards a prosperous nation, the faces of their struggles have shifted. But through earthquakes, hurricanes, and disease epidemics, one thing has not changed. Haiti’s government has proven to be inefficient at handling these catastrophes, and a humanitarian crisis has exploded on the island because of their negligence. It is not surprising that during decades of disappointment, the people of Haiti have taken to the streets to make their voices heard. The protests first emerged two years ago and have continued mostly peacefully until recently. More people are gathering by the crowds as political distrust has hit an all-time high.

Haitian citizens are demonstrating against their interim President Jovenel Moise. Officials argue that Moise completed began a five-year term in 2016 and should have left office in February. But Moise argues that he did not take office until 2017 and therefore has until 2022. Haitian citizens are calling for his resignation as the country faces a unique constitutional crisis.

Moise is pushing to change more than his term length. He has proposed a constitutional referendum that restructures government branches, allocating more presidential power. He argues that the current constitution has detrimental flaws that create obstacles to the prosperity of Haiti through government. Haitian citizens disagree, and civil unrest is rampant throughout the streets. Billboards campaigning for reforming of the constitution have been pulled down, showing their disapproval of the proposed referendum. They can be heard chanting “Down with the dictatorship.”

Throughout the year, what began as peaceful demonstrations have evolved into violence and chaos. On January 14th, hundreds peacefully took to the capital, Port-au-Prince, to address their leaders. They were joined later by city officials, journalists, and current and former police officers, who all expressed their concerns on the nation’s human rights abuses. By early February, tens of thousands rallied in Port-au-Prince. Crowds began to grow, and eventually, tear gas was deployed in an attempt to disperse protesters. Many have been arrested, injured, and even lost their lives. Amidst the chaos, a prison break occurred, where more than 25 involved were killed. As if the situation wasn’t dire enough, the turmoil is hindering the country’s distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine. Social media and propaganda contribute to the distribution of misinformation. It doesn’t help that most Haitians live in distrust of their government. After facing constant issues with healthcare access, they fear that the government is only using the vaccine as a tool of manipulation or to seek more aid from other nations.

All of these events have influenced the livelihood of the orphanages on the island. As we at The Brian Young Foundation continue to support these children, we ask that you keep us in your prayers. Please pray that God will provide healing for these underserved kids and that their government will fight to give them the environment they deserve. May they find peace on the streets of their home. We pray that the officials of Haiti come to an agreement and establish a safe system that protects and honors all of their citizens.

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