The Haitian Times
Bridging the gap
By Oldjy François
CAP-HAITIEN — A group of students from the Université Chrétienne du Nord d’Haïti (UCNH) took to the streets in Haiti’s second largest city to denounce the alleged rape of a schoolmate and demand urgent action to combat sexual violence against women.
On April 19, the students marched down the streets, carrying signs with suc expressions as “end rape,” “no more violence,” “we are tired of learning in a stressful environment” and “Down with all fake pastors in UCNH.”
The march followed the alleged rape of a 21-year-old management science student at the UCNH dorms last week in Limbé, a commune 18 miles from Cap-Haitien. The protesters also brought up a 2020 alleged rape for which there was no follow-up.
The university’s dean, J. Dona Darius, did not respond to messages requesting comments from he Haitian Times.
Bringing the women’s rapists to justice and adequate security at the university are the students’ top demands. They also want their dorms to be fenced off and to have a safe sleeping environment.
Many of the students are from families whose parents earn a living as street vendors of bananas, peanuts, coal as “Madan Sara.”
Other allegations of sexual violence are circulating in the Northern Department. A group of women fighting for women’s rights staged a peaceful protest in the Parc Industriel de Caracol (PIC) following the alleged rape of an employee back in March. The Association of Women of the Sun of Haiti (AFASDA), the Group of Women Engaged of Ouanaminthe and the Haitian Women’s Solidarity Organization (OFASO) had organized the March 8 event on International Women’s Day.
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