Many Haitian Schools Empty as Teachers Protest Lack of Pay and Safe Working Conditions

Photo shows Port-au-Prince, Haiti. (Photo by Robin Canfield on Unsplash)

Teachers in Haiti have refused to return to classrooms, even taking to the streets to protest a lack of pay and safe working conditions. This was already a problem in the country, explains Eva DeHart of For Haiti with Love, but the pandemic made it worse.

She says, “Haiti runs in cycles. Their government gets money. Sometimes it doles it out and sometimes it doesn’t. When it doesn’t, that means the police can work for months without a paycheck. The teachers can work for the entire school year without a paycheck.”

DeHart says Haitians have learned to expect this kind of sporadic payment, saving money away until whenever the government can provide payment again.

“How they make it in the meantime, I have no idea.”

The situation is so desperate, DeHart says, that theft has become an expected part of the culture. “I mean, you dare not leave anything out or on attended. It will be deemed available to whoever passes by. They’re going to take what they need to survive from people who may have a little more.”

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SOURCE: Mission Network News, Kevin Zeller

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