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Report and Panel Discussion on Rise of Sexual Exploitation in Haiti

CONTACT: Stephanie Kung MADRE (212) 627-0444,

Report and Panel Discussion on Rise of Sexual Exploitation in Haiti

Two years after an earthquake devastated Haiti, a report was released titled "Struggling to Survive, " detailing the impact of sexual exploitation on displaced Haitian women and girls. 

The report brings attention to this issue, as well as highlighting the current barriers to addressing sexual exploitation. It also presents recommendations to protect the human rights of women and girls engaging in transactional sex. In addition, the report offers a unique legal analysis of the protections available for women and girls who have experienced a wide range of human rights violations associated with transactional sex.

On March 14 at 4 pm, the report's co-author Lisa Davis, Human Rights Advocacy Director at MADRE and Clinical Professor of Law for the IWHR Clinic at CUNY Law School, joined by Eramithe Delva, Malya Villard-Appolon and Jocie Philistin of KOFAVIV, MADRE's Haitian sister organization, will speak about the epidemic of sexual exploitation in Haiti.

Also on the panel are Jessica Stern, Director of Programs at the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission and Mario Joseph, Managing Attorney at the Bureau des Avocats Internationaux, who will discuss the legal aspects related to sexual exploitation in Haiti.

Lisa Davis said today, "Displaced women and girls in Haiti are impoverished and with few options. As a result, many are forced into "survival sex" - sex in exchange for money, clothing, shelter, education, or even a single meal. In turn, they are at increased risk of sexual violence and health threats. Yet this has not received enough attention from the Haitian government or the international community. We must shed light on this crisis."

All panelists are available for interview following the discussion.

DATE: March 14, 2012

TIME: 4 pm

LOCATION: Room XXI, United Nations Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland

To read the report in full, click here.

The report is authored by MADRE, the Commission of Women Victims for Victims (KOFAVIV), the International Women's Human Rights (IWHR) Clinic at the City University of New York (CUNY) School of Law, the Global Justice Clinic at NYU School of Law (GJC) and the Center for Gender & Refugee Studies at UC Hastings College of the Law (CGRS).