Haitian women’s activists regrouping

Women’s e-News has profiled a recently formed coalition of Haitan women’s rights groups, lobbying for “a Haiti where women no longer suffer high levels of sexual violence and marginalization at home and in the paid work force”.

Femmes Citoyennes Haiti Solidaire, or Women Citizens Haiti United, is a coalition of 106 women’s groups, formed in March:

The activists have no office but are managing to reach each other through e-mail and text messages, according to Martine Fourcand, a sociologist and activist who handles the group’s communication. The coalition formed on March 19, but continues to attract longstanding organizations to its membership.

Souerette Policar Montjoie is president of Lig Pouva Fanm, a women’s leadership organization in Port-au-Prince that joined the coalition.

“We have a lot of things to say and Haitian women are very strong,” she told Women’s eNews in a phone interview. “But in Haiti, the position of men is higher than women. We want men to know that we can put our hands together. They don’t have to fight us.”

Women Citizens Haiti United members range from a collective of female university students to a network of women working in rural community organizations. Members represent an array of special projects: curbing domestic and sexual violence, as well as improving women’s access to credit, job training and education.

Also see this video update from the NGO Madre which is working with women’s groups in Haiti: