Letters to the Editor

Voting in Haiti

I had the privilege of accompanying some of my Haitian colleagues on Sunday who went to vote at a local high school in the community of Nan Kafe, Lagonav.

The polling place was packed with young and old alike, patiently lined up waiting to vote.

Democracy, participation and nonviolence were the hallmarks of the day in this rural community, and according to radio reports, all across Haiti.

Hundreds of thousands of Haitians turned out to cast their ballots in an atmosphere that was largely peaceful and orderly.

In Nan Kafe, my colleagues were able to vote with little delay.

They then joined the crowd of voters gathered in the schoolyard to debate the issues.

Haiti only seems to make the news when it’s struggling or in crisis.

Sunday’s vote is an example of some of the meaningful progress being made here.

It shows the depth of commitment among Haitians to democracy and nonviolence, as well.

It’s a commitment that I see every day in the communities where my colleagues and I are working with grassroots leaders organizing to end child slavery and violence against women and girls.

They’re committed to Haiti becoming a nation where every child goes to a good school and every adult can find dignified work.

Sunday’s vote is another reflection of that commitment and progress.

Brian Stevens, operations and communications director, Beyond Borders,

Port-au-Prince, Haiti