Hurricane Matthew Impacts Caribbean Partners
Rev. Patrick Villier, CONASPEH’s President, reported that 60,000 people have been displaced in Haiti due to Hurricane Mathew. All of the harvest has been destroyed. One million people are in need of humanitarian help. 320 schools were destroyed. The Haitian Government is asking for international solidarity. Churches, which also serve as schools, community centers, and even hospitals, are mostly destroyed on the southern and southwest part of the island. The elections that were supposed to be held in October were cancelled. The new dates for elections are November and February, for the second round.
The passing of the hurricane has given a clear picture of the material and social needs in Haiti. The economic situation in Haiti is simply catastrophic: 41% of the people are unemployed, the inflation rate has surpassed 13%, and GDP grew by less than 1.7%. Haiti’s trade deficit is one of the reasons why 80% of the population is living in poverty. With an annual income of just $1,800 per person, Haitians are classified as among the poorest on the planet.