Sonia Pierre Haitian Dominican Wins RFK Award

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Empress Verite

Sonia Pierre Haitian Dominican Wins RFK Award

Post by Empress Verite » Fri Oct 06, 2006 8:04 pm

Dominican Born Haitian Rights Defender, Sonia Pierre, wins 2006 RFK Human Rights Award
by Robert F. Kennedy Memorial ( info [at] rfkmemorial.org )
Friday Oct 6th, 2006 11:31 AM

Sonia Pierre to Receive 2006 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award for Protecting the Rights of Haitian Immigrants and Their Descendants in the Dominican Republic. The award will be presented by Ethel Kennedy in a ceremony hosted by Senator Edward Kennedy at the Caucus Room of the U.S. Senate at 10:30 am November 17th, 2006.

For Immediate Release: October 6th, 2006
Contact: Jeffrey Buchanan 202-463-7575 ext 241, buchanan [at] rfkmemorial.org

Dominican Born Haitian Rights Defender, Sonia Pierre, wins 2006 RFK Human Rights Award

Sonia Pierre to Receive 2006 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award for Protecting the Rights of Haitian Immigrants and Their Descendants in the Dominican Republic. The award will be presented by Ethel Kennedy in a ceremony hosted by Senator Edward Kennedy at the Caucus Room of the U.S. Senate at 10:30 am November 17th, 2006.

Washington DC--- The 2006 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award will be presented to Sonia Pierre, Director of the Movement for Dominican Women of Haitian Descent (MUDHA), on Friday November 17th, 2006. Under Sonia's leadership, MUDHA has risen to protect the rights of the Dominican Republic's Haitian immigrants and their descendants and to empower women and children in the face of deep rooted discrimination and intolerance. Despite threats against her life, Sonia has been a driving force for change and a leader in the movement to end human rights violations against Haitians in the Dominican Republic.

“This award strengthens our work at MUDHA, our institution, and our communities,” said Sonia upon receiving the award. “As a human rights activist, who has been fighting for the recognition of the human rights of Haitian immigrants and their descendents, since an early age, I owe this award to the communities MUDHA supports, to my colleagues and to all who believed in our work.”

Sonia will be awarded by Ethel Kennedy in a ceremony hosted by Senator Edward Kennedy on Friday November 17th, 2006 beginning at 10:30 AM in Washington, DC at the U.S. Senate's Caucus Room. Stay tuned to http://www.rfkmemorial.org for updates.

Like many of the Dominican Republic's 650,000 people of Haitian descent, Sonia grew up in one of the country's migrant worker camps, called a bateye. Her family left Haiti in search of economic opportunity working in the state-owned sugarcane fields of the Dominican Republic. Sonia began working on human rights issues in 1976 at the age of 13.

Dominicans of Haitian descent often come from families that have lived in the country for generations and have never even visited Haiti. They are denied their constitutional right to citizenship and the necessary documents for a legal identity. Many Haitian immigrant and their descendants remain virtually stateless, giving the government a rationale to deny them individual rights. Numerous human rights groups have documented how ethnic Haitians are regularly subjected to violence and their rights to education, adequate housing, water and other fundamental human rights are violated. Females in the Haitian community are subjected to widespread rapes with few legal or social resources to look to for help.

“The level of violence against Haitian immigrants and their descendants in the Dominican Republic is alarming,” said Gay McDougal, RFK Human Rights Award Judge and U.N. Independent Expert on Minority Issues. “At a time when even second and third generation ethnic Haitians are targets of brutal human rights abuses, Sonia Pierre has risen as the most profound leader in the nation's movement for minority rights.”

Sonia has become a vocal leader against policies that deny Haitian immigrants and their descendants' legal equality and keep them in perpetual poverty. She was a petitioner in the landmark case before the Inter-American Court for Human Rights, Yean and Bosico v. Dominican Republic, which for the first time in the court's history upheld human rights laws prohibiting racial discrimination in access to nationality and citizenship. The two children named in the case had been denied birth certificates due to requirements established by the discriminatory registration system. The Court ruled that the nation's current system of registration for citizenship not only defied the country's own constitution, which extends citizenship to all born within its borders, but had violated the fundamental human rights of Yean and Bosico. The Court then ordered the Dominican Republic to open its schools' doors to all children, aiming to end rampant discrimination in the nation's education system against its Haitian minority.

“One year after the Bosico decision , the Dominican Republic has yet to implement the court's orders in direct violation of its own legal obligations,” said Monika Kalra Varma, Acting Director of the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Center for Human Rights. “Upon giving the human rights award, we begin a partnership with Sonia and MUDHA, working with her movement to ensure the human rights of Haitians in the Dominican Republic are realized.”

For almost 40 years the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial (http://www.rfkmemorial.org), has served as an activist organization dedicated to Robert F. Kennedy's vision of a more peaceful and just world. The RFK Memorial Center for Human Rights works to advance the human rights movement through partnering with courageous grassroots defenders from around the world who have won the annual Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award. Sonia becomes the 37th person to win the award and the second person from the Caribbean.

Source: Robert F. Kennedy Memorial (http://www.rfkmemorial.org)
http://www.rfkmemorial.org/legacyinaction/...

Empress Verite

Mesi Anpil

Post by Empress Verite » Sat Oct 07, 2006 6:29 pm

Mesi anpil pou pwen sa a Edwin:

Sa w di an se vre Edwin paske one sa a ap pote plis atensyon sou sitiyasyon ayisyen (ne) yo nan repiblik dominiken. Se ou sitiyasyon ki te twoble m anpil depi lontan. E m pat jam tande ou we anpil moun ki te konpran bagay sa ditou. Mwen swete ke kounye a lot ayisyen/ne ap vin jwen lit dyaspora lot kote kankou eta zini nan chak eta yo, bahamas, st.matin, gwadloup, matinik, kayenn (Guyanne Francais), Dominika, St. Croix, St. Thomas, ak lot kote ke m pa sonje kounye a. Paske le m li kondisyon ayisyen nan peyi sa yo se ou bagay ki grav anpil. Mwen pa konnen pou ki sa gouvenmen ayisyen an pa fome ou depatmen pou gade et etidye sitiyasyon sa yo.

Dapre ou men eske gen ou kote ke ayiseyn/ne mache "immigre" ki bon pou yo. Ou kote ke yo pa jwen diskriminasyon sosyal ak prejuje immoral? M pa jam tande pale de kote sa a. Men mwen ta renmen konen sil ekziste kan mem.

Mwen felisite Sonia pou travay li fe a. Li te komense telmen jenn e mwen konten anpil ke moun ki gen pouvwa yo rekonet sa tou.

Mwen respekte tout moun ki gen ke pou yo fe aktivite sa yo. Mwen swete ke yo se bon moun nan ke yo tou. Paske si wap fe travay sa yo pou ka gen "rewards" mwen pa kwe ke wap reyisi di tou. E konye a kondisyon ayisyen nan dyaspora deplorab nou bezwen ed anpil. Bagay Bahamas la se ou lot ka grav anko ke nou fok adrese o pli to possib. Epi anko fo nou tounin nan eta zini an. Se bagay ki bezwen moun ki gen bon ke e gros tet .

Kenbe.
EV

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Post by admin » Sun Oct 08, 2006 12:00 pm

Let's celebrate her lifetime dedication to Justice. Support MUDHA in any way you can.

Guy



Press Contact: Jeffrey Buchanan 202-463-7575 ext 241 buchanan@rfkmemorial.org

DOMINICAN BORN HAITIAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST WINS 2006 RFK HUMAN RIGHTS AWARD

Sonia Pierre to Receive 2006 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award by Ethel Kennedy for Protecting the Rights of Haitian Immigrants and Their Descendants in the Dominican Republic

Washington, D.C.— The 2006 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award will be presented to Sonia Pierre, Director of the Movement for Dominican Women of Haitian Descent (MUDHA), on Friday November 17th, 2006. Under Sonia's leadership, MUDHA has risen to protect the rights of the Dominican Republic's Haitian immigrants and their descendants and to empower women and children in the face of deep rooted discrimination and intolerance. Despite threats against her life, Sonia has been a driving force for change and a leader in the movement to end human rights violations against Haitians in the Dominican Republic.

“This award strengthens our work at MUDHA, our institution, and our communities,” said Sonia upon receiving the award. “As a human rights activist, who has been fighting for the recognition of the human rights of Haitian immigrants and their descendents, since an early age, I owe this award to the communities MUDHA supports, to my colleagues and to all who believed in our work.”

Sonia will be awarded by Ethel Kennedy in a ceremony hosted by Senator Edward Kennedy on Friday November 17th, 2006 beginning at 10:30 AM in Washington, DC at the U.S. Senate's Caucus Room. Stay tuned to www.rfkmemorial.org for updates.

Like many of the Dominican Republic's 650,000 people of Haitian descent, Sonia grew up in one of the country's migrant worker camps, called a bateye. Her family left Haiti in search of economic opportunity working in the state-owned sugarcane fields of the Dominican Republic. Sonia began working on human rights issues in 1976 at the age of 13.

Dominicans of Haitian descent often come from families that have lived in the country for generations and have never even visited Haiti. They are denied their constitutional right to citizenship and the necessary documents for a legal identity. Many Haitian immigrant and their descendants remain virtually stateless, giving the government a rationale to deny them individual rights. Numerous human rights groups have documented how ethnic Haitians are regularly subjected to violence and their rights to education, adequate housing, water and other fundamental human rights are violated. Females in the Haitian community are subjected to widespread rapes with few legal or social resources to look to for help.

“The level of violence against Haitian immigrants and their descendants in the Dominican Republic is alarming,” said Gay McDougal, RFK Human Rights Award Judge and U.N. Independent Expert on Minority Issues. “At a time when even second and third generation ethnic Haitians are targets of brutal human rights abuses, Sonia Pierre has risen as the most profound leader in the nation's movement for minority rights.”

Sonia has become a vocal leader against policies that deny Haitian immigrants and their descendants' legal equality and keep them in perpetual poverty. She was a petitioner in the landmark case before the Inter-American Court for Human Rights, Yean and Bosico v. Dominican Republic, which for the first time in the court's history upheld human rights laws prohibiting racial discrimination in access to nationality and citizenship. The two children named in the case had been denied birth certificates due to requirements established by the discriminatory registration system. The Court ruled that the nation's current system of registration for citizenship not only defied the country's own constitution, which extends citizenship to all born within its borders, but had violated the fundamental human rights of Yean and Bosico. The Court then ordered the Dominican Republic to open its schools' doors to all children, aiming to end rampant discrimination in the nation's education system against its Haitian minority.

“One year after the Bosico decision , the Dominican Republic has yet to implement the court's orders in direct violation of its own legal obligations,” said Monika Kalra Varma, Acting Director of the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Center for Human Rights.

The Dominican government has defiantly embraced racism and exclusion by beginning the process to amend their constitution, calling a popular consultation. The consultation brings government officials and non-governmental groups together to discuss how best to reform the Dominican constitution, including the subject of striking away articles that give citizenship to those born in the country. MUDHA and other groups that defend the nationality of those born in the Dominican Republic have been barred from participating in the discussion. Still Sonia has continued her national and international campaign to bring light to these injustices and to rid the excesses of racism and intolerance from her country.

“Upon giving the human rights award, we begin a partnership with Sonia and MUDHA, working with her movement to ensure the human rights of Haitians in the Dominican Republic are realized“, explains Varma.

For almost 40 years the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial (www.rfkmemorial.org), has served as an activist organization dedicated to Robert F. Kennedy's vision of a more peaceful and just world. The RFK Memorial Center for Human Rights works to advance the human rights movement through partnering with courageous grassroots defenders from around the world who have won the annual Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award.

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Post by admin » Sun Oct 08, 2006 12:02 pm

Reconocimiento
Sonia Pierre recibirá el "Premio Robert F. Kennedy de Derechos Humanos 2006"

Eddy beltre
Santo Domingo. 8 de octubre de 2006.- Sonia Pierre, directora del Movimiento de Mujeres Dominico Haitianas (MUDHA), fue seleccionada en Washington para recibir el premio Robert F. Kennedy de Derechos Humanos 2006, por su lucha a favor de los derechos de los/as inmigrantes haitianos/as y sus descendientes en la República Dominicana.

Su participación protagónica en el proceso llevado a cabo en la Corte Interamericana de los Derechos en el caso Yean Bosico contra el Estado dominicano, pesó en la decisión del comité que revisó los expedientes de otros/as candidatos/as.

Pierre, es la segunda persona del Caribe en recibir este premio sobre 37, desde que se estableció éste prestigioso reconocimiento internacional. El mismo busca particularmente, llamar la atención del mundo sobre casos especiales de graves violaciones de derechos humanos. La situación de los/as inmigrantes haitianos/as con alrededor de 100 años en el país, ha sido catalogada como la más grave de la región.

Además de las repatriaciones masivas que han afectado a unas 300,000 personas desde 1991, acciones colectivas de persecuciones xenófobas de turbas de dominicanos/as en distintos puntos del territorio, se han registrado desde mayo del 2005 en por lo menos 10 ocasiones con un saldo de muertos y heridos, así como de unas 300 casas incendiadas, quemadas o saqueadas.

"El nivel de violencia contra los/as inmigrantes haitianos/as y sus descendientes en la República Dominicana es muy alarmante" declaró Gay McDougal, uno de los jueces del comité, quien también es un experto independiente de las Naciones Unidas sobre temas de las minorías.

La inacción oficial en la República Dominicana ha creado "serias inquietudes" a los miembros del Comité y políticos de Washington, frente a las campañas mediáticas contra la presencia haitiana fomentadas por grupos nacionalistas aliados al poder, a través de claros llamados al odio y a la violencia contra los/as haitianos/as y sus descendientes.

Sonia Pierre, que nació en territorio dominicano, ha sido varias veces acusada de llevar a cabo campañas de descrédito en contra de la República Dominicana, por lo que ha sido objeto de amenazas al igual que sus hijos. Mientras que voces influyentes de los sectores nacionalistas han pedido que "se le retire" su nacionalidad dominicana.

La señora Pierre se inició en el trabajo de defensa de los derechos de los/as migrantes haitianos/as, a finales de los años 70, como encargada de la sección de mujeres del Centro Cultural Dominico Haitiano (CCDH), organización de la cual se separó al crecer su liderazgo, para crear MUDHA.

El premio RFK 2006 será entregado en el "Caucus Room" del senado de los Estados Unidos en una ceremonia donde asistirán personalidades internacionales vinculadas a los derechos humanos y la migración internacional, como también de influyentes políticos estadounidenses relacionados con los grupos minoritarios.

Entre 20 nominados/as de distintos países y continentes, en el año 2003, la activista dominico haitiana recibió el premio Gineta Sagan de derechos humanos de Amnistía Internacional. Era la primera vez que ese premio era otorgado a favor de la promoción de los derechos humanos de los/as haitianos/as, dijo Cosette Thomson, directora de AI USA.

El Senador Edward Kennedy presidirá el acto, mientras que el galardón será presentado por Ethel Kennedy el día 17 de Noviembre 2006, a las 10:30 a.m.

www.espacinsular.org

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Post by admin » Sun Oct 08, 2006 1:10 pm

More information on Sonia (Solange) Pierre, MUDHA, and the struggle:

http://haitiforever.com/windowsonhaiti/mudha1.shtml

http://haitiforever.com/windowsonhaiti/mudha2.shtml

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