Haiti’s Epidemic of Child Trafficking

First earthquake, then cholera: Now kids are being smuggled and sold.

A young Haitian boy in a displacement camp looks at the outside world with suspicion. For good reason, apparently. (Photo: Swoan Parker/Reuters)

Allan MacDonell is TakePart’s News + Opinion editor, with a focus on social justice.

Driving a car around Haiti is full of difficulties. Determining which is the “right” side of the road is impossible. The few traffic signs are ignored. Roads are rich in huge potholes and roamed by bandits.

Too often, the children supply markets for indentured domestic servants, prostitution and organ sales.

And there are traffic stops. Especially along the border with the Dominican Republic, vehicles are subject to thorough and frequent searches. Officials are not ferreting out drugs or weapons. They are searching for children.

“Since the earthquake,” Jean-Gardy Muscadin, head of Haiti’s Child Protection Brigade, tells Al Jazeera, “we’ve had about 400 cases considered as child trafficking.”

The kids are being whisked into the Dominican Republic to the north, with promises of a better future in Haiti’s more prosperous neighbor. Too often, reportedly, the children supply markets for indentured domestic servants, prostitution and organ sales.

The best way to fight this terrible exploitation of hardship children? Join in with the people who are trying to make life in Haiti more livable.

Related Stories on TakePart

Get More

Takepart’s Most Popular

From The Web

Comments ()