HLLN Update:
Paterson's Timeline for delivery of donated goods for Haiti storm victims

By Ezili Dantò/HLLN, Dec. 11, 2008
Food Donation Rot in New York while Haitian Storm Victims Starve and Die, Sept. 8, 2008


Gov. Paterson apologizes for 3-month delayed relief to Haiti

Children dying in Haiti, victims of food crisis
Life gets worse for Haiti's hungry children
U.N.: High food prices creating more hunger

Ezili Dantò on Help for the Hurricane Victims in Haiti, Sept. 12, 2008


HLLN's counter-colonial narrative on deforestation , Haitian Perspectives, Oct. 25, 2008

HLLN on need for Constitutional Amendment in Haiti - Not A Priority, Haitian Perspectives, Oct. 25, 2008

Haitian Americans Ask of the US Congress and New US President
By HLLN, Haitian Perspectives, Sept. 2008

HLLN is mobilizing legislative and international support for Haitian-American foreign policy concerns


Marguerite Laurent/Ezili Dantò performs the Yanvalou for
So Much Like Here (See text and RBM 2004 Video Reel)

Dessalines Is Rising!!
Ayisyen: You Are Not Alone!


Sam Cooke-It's Been A Long Time Coming...But Change Gonna Come

HLLN Urgent Action Alert: Help the people of Gonaives, Haiti directly - Also, ask for TPS for Haitians nationals

HLLN SAMPLE LETTER Asking President Bush to Assist Haiti's Recovery Efforts by Granting Haitian Nationals TPS

Editorials urging the President to Grant TPS to Haitians

See our List of Requested Items for the Storm Victims

A success story: Relief Goods from New York to Haiti

Ezili Dantò performs the banda dance as a Gede for Breaking Sea Chain (See also Intro to Breaking Sea Chains and PhotoGallery)



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zilibuttonCarnegie Hall
Video Clip
No other national
group in the world
sends more money
than Haitians living
in the Diaspora
Red Sea- audio

The Red Sea

Ezili Dantò's master Haitian dance class (Video clip)

zilibuttonEzili's Dantò's
Haitian & West African Dance Troop
Clip one - Clip two

So Much Like Here- Jazzoetry CD audio clip

Ezili Danto's

to Self

Update on
Site Soley

RBM Video Reel

Angry with
Boat sinking
A group of Haitian migrants arrive in a bus after being repatriated from the nearby Turks and Caicos Islands, in Cap-Haitien, northern Haiti, Thursday, May 10, 2007. They were part of the survivors of a sailing vessel crowded with Haitian migrants that overturned Friday, May 4 in moonlit waters a half-mile from shore in shark-infested waters. Haitian migrants claim a Turks and Caicos naval vessel rammed their crowded sailboat twice before it capsized. (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)

Dessalines' Law
and Ideals

Breaking Sea Chains

Little Girl
in the Yellow
Sunday Dress

Anba Dlo, Nan Ginen
Ezili Danto's Art-With-The-Ancestors Workshops - See, Red, Black & Moonlight series or Haitian-West African

Clip one -Clip two
ance performance
zilibutton In a series of articles written for the October 17, 2006 bicentennial commemoration of the life and works of Dessalines, I wrote for HLLN that: "Haiti's liberator and founding father, General Jean Jacques Dessalines, said, "I Want the Assets of the Country to be Equitably Divided" and for that he was assassinated by the Mullato sons of France. That was the first coup d'etat, the Haitian holocaust - organized exclusion of the masses, misery, poverty and the impunity of the economic elite - continues (with Feb. 29, 2004 marking the 33rd coup d'etat). Haiti's peoples continue to resist the return of despots, tyrants and enslavers who wage war on the poor majority and Black, contain-them-in poverty through neocolonialism' debts, "free trade" and foreign "investments." These neocolonial tyrants refuse to allow an equitable division of wealth, excluding the majority in Haiti from sharing in the country's wealth and assets." (See also, Kanga Mundele: Our mission to live free or die trying, Another Haitian Independence Day under occupation; The Legacy of Impunity of One Sector-Who killed Dessalines?; The Legacy of Impunity:The Neoconlonialist inciting political instability is the problem. Haiti is underdeveloped in crime, corruption, violence, compared to other nations, all, by Marguerite 'Ezili Dantò' Laurent
No other national group in the world sends more money than Haitians living in the Diaspora


Oct 17 – Day of Heroes In Haiti- See
Dialogue between Two Haitians


US lawmaker calls for action against Haiti hunger , Nov. 26, 2008


Congresswoman Waters Calls on USAID to Save the lives of Children Starving in Haiti
(HLLN on oversight needed on USAID )


Starvation slams Haiti
Kids dying after 4 storms ravage crops, livestock

Haiti: storm victims starve, Nov. 4, 2008

Haiti aid effort unravels by Mike Thomson, BBC News, Oct. 24, 2008

US lawmaker calls for action against Haiti hunger , Nov. 26, 2008


December 11, 2008 HLLN Update:
Governor Paterson's Timeline for delivery of donated goods for Haiti storm victims

by Ezili Dantò/Marguerite Laurent for HLLN's Haitian Perspective, Dec. 11, 2008

Click here for USAID Nov. 14, 2008 report- pdf download


According to Governor David Paterson's office, the following update may be relayed to our Network and the Haitian and international community Ezili's HLLN serves:

1. The total collected storm donation supplies for Haiti is more than the 77 tons as previously reported to HLLN. The total collected supplies donated for the September 2008 Haiti storm victims that are in the custody of the State of New York are 84 tons.

2. The first package of donated storm goods - approx. 8 tons, left New York on December 3, 2008, via Airline Ambassador by boat and is scheduled to arrive between Dec. 20 - to Dec. 23, 2008. The shipping date is estimated between 17 to 20 days depending on which ship the goods went out on and if it has stops along the way or not. But the arrival date is between Dec. 20 and Dec. 23rd. We will follow up with the Governor's office on those dates and report to the Network. The NGO responsible for distribution of the 8 tons of supplies shipped by Airline Ambassadors is Mission Baptiste Eben-Ezer, which is expected to receive the goods and distribute them. They plan to distribute them in communities in Gonaives. Of the 8 tons that went out on December 3, 2008 - 2 tons was clothing and the remaining 6 tons are presumably donated food, medical and water supplies.

3. Fed. Express has donated one plane, scheduled to leave before Friday this week (by Dec. 12) with approximately 4 tons of food and the contracted recipient for distribution is Catholic Relief Services. The Federal Express plane will fly the 4 tons from New York to Miami where it will be flown to Haiti by an Ameri-Jet plane.

4. So 12 tons of the 84 is in the pipeline for delivery according to Paterson's office as stated above. The bulk of the September Haiti donations - 72 tons - have been dispatched as follows; there are now transport arrangements, and an expected shipping date for 34 tons of that 72 tons. The remaining 38 tons have no transport or shipping arrangements as of yet.

5. According to Paterson's office, of the 84 tons donated, 40 tons were clothing, 2 tons of which went out with the Airline Ambassador shipping on Dec. 3, 2008. One explanation for the current lack of transport and shipping arrangements for the remaining 38 tons of clothing is that, according to Paterson's office, they are having problems finding a non-governmental organization in Haiti that would receive and store and then distribute the clothing. Catholic Relief Services, the Governor’s representative indicates, would not take the 38 tons of clothing but "have been more than generous to take over 30 tons of supplies and we are extremely grateful for their efforts." Another explanation is that according to USAID, clothing is not an emergency supply that is needed in Haiti. Paterson's office offered to forward the USAID statement to this effect... We've put, on our website for downloading, the USAID report dated Nov. 14, 2008 shared with us on this issue.

Notwithstanding said USAID report, HLLN advised Governor Paterson's representative that the children in the mountain village of Baie D'orange need clothing and shoes URGENTLY and are dying not only of famine, disease, but are COLD. We also advised Governor Patersons' representative that the donated clothing were meant for Haiti and if these clothes are in good condition, we could assist the Governor in locating a recipient in Haiti since they are willing to pay for the transport. We have some partners in Haiti and are pursuing this and pressing to express the Haitian dignity and respect that would be extended by New York officials if the Haitian Civil Preparedness and disaster authorities and their devised procedure for donors to follow, were not summarily by-passed by foreign NGOs. But, by cover of this post, we herein ask our Network members to give us some advice if you'd like to make sure these goods get to the hands of the most needy in Baie D'orange, Cabaret, Site Soley and Gonaives, et al…. This is something we who work with the most disenfranchised and poorest of the poor in Haiti could make sure about and which the Governor's representative has stated they would welcome our assistance in.

As you all already know, HLLN advocates Haiti becomes less dependent on foreign aid and the foreign NGOs and more economically self-sufficient. So, we did ask why the Haitian government was not being utilized as the recipient of goods donated, mostly by Haitians in the Tri-State area, as opposed to a foreign NGO in Haiti. The answer was that New York State agency on this matters work with US state agencies and that working with USAID on this and being advised by USAID for the State Department, the upshot is that New York was informed it could not have direct "diplomatic relations with the Haitian government this way." This quote is an approximation, but it is the gist of what we were informed. Notwithstanding this statement HLLN was also told that "we have not had direct contact with the Haitian government but again the Haitian consul general, Mr. Augustine, has been an active participant in the process and we're pleased to be working with him."

But later, in the course of another conversation after we'd again relayed our strong concern that the Haitian government not be by-passed, Governor Paterson's representatives also said that "We cannot reach out to the Haitian government but if the Haitian government reaches out to us, then we will work with them." Apparently there is precedent for working directly with the Haitian government as the recipient and distributor of relief goods from the State of New York. Governor Paterson's representative mentioned a specific instance in the past, before February 29, 2004, where relief goods where sent to Haiti and received for distribution not by a foreign religious NGO but directly by the Haitian government.

Obviously, the use of foreign NGOs to by-pass the duly elected Haitian government does not make sense to HLLN and we do see the need to change the current paradigm and have the US State Department and USAID stop going over the heads of the sovereign government of Haiti to empower the foreign NGOs to the detriment of Haitian public policy and safety. This episodes highlights the work yet to be done, and need for the new US-Haiti relationship we at HLLN have been advocating for in:
What Haitian Americans Ask of the New US Congress and President.

We've asked for the opportunity to educate Governor Paterson's office and representatives on the concerns of Haiti community organizers, activists and Haitian legal advocacy representatives for a self-sufficient and economically viable, just, non-dependent and progressive Haiti. We hope this is the beginning of that relationship.

But, the bottom line is that Paterson's office has not given up trying to see how to get the clothes to Haiti. They are working on a number of options through a FEMA established list of possible NGOs and other state agencies. Governor Paterson's representative told Ezili's HLLN that "although we don't yet have shipping arrangements for clothing, I can assure you that we are working every potential option and we remain optimistic that we will find arrangements."

6. Governor Paterson's representative indicates that they have made arrangements for the remaining 34 tons of food, medical and water supplies. The New York National Guard soldiers are in the process of packaging and loading, into Conex containers, this 34 tons and it is scheduled for SHIPMENT by boat through Sebourne Marine.

The expected date of arrival will depend on the completion of loading and if the Sebourne Marine ship that ends up being used has a direct or stopover routes. But, no projected date of arrival was confirmed. What is confirmed is that the EXPECTED completion date for loading the duly packaged 34 tons into connex containers is this Friday, Dec. 12, 2008. If the loading is done by this Friday, then probably the 34 tons will be shipped sometime next week (Dec. 15 to 19). We shall follow up with Governor Paterson's office on this and report back to the Network.

Governor Paterson's representative did not know which port the items shipped through Airline Ambassadors and Sebourne Marine will be delivered to in Haiti, but will let us know when they get this information in-hand.

The contact person for Governor David Paterson's office who provided this updated and final information is Ms. Jennifer Givner, Chief of Staff for Public Safety. Ms. Givner has expressed an admirable commitment to see through the timetable above outlined. We will follow up with Governor Paterson's office on this next week when the remaining 32 tons are expected to leave port and advise our community of the progress. The Govenor's office, through Ms. Givner, expressed concern and consternation when we mentioned, referencing the 3-months delay, that at least 26 children starved to death in an isolated mountain region of Baie d'Orange Haiti. She underlined that her office is not indifferent to the struggle to feed the starving victims. In particular, she said "I would really like the community to know that we're appreciative of their donations and committed to getting these donations to the people that need them most."

Obviously some of this may have gone better if HLLN had been involved with assisting the Governor's office on this at the beginning in September. But, as you all know, we've been very busy, assisting the storm victims ourselves, pushing for a stop to deportations, asking for TPS, countering the endless negative colonial-narratives on Haiti of the mainstream media, working on the vote for the Obama election and putting together the position paper that will launch HLLN into the 2009 change that's coming with:
What Haitian Americans Ask of the New US Congress and President

Moreover, it's fair to also say, we were told our help wasn't needed because others had this matter well in hand. But last week, rumors were confirmed and we learned the September donated storm relief items had yet to leave New York! This update and our two previous postings on this since Monday, Dec. 8, 2008 reflects HLLN's public paper trail of our contact with the authorities working on this at the Governor's office, and, our efforts to forthwith assist in salvaging what's possible at this juncture to: 1) meet the Haitian community's interests for reliable information, and 2) for salvaging what's possible at this juncture in terms for getting the relief goods into the hands of those most vulnerable in Haiti, in every way possible.

We thank Governor David Paterson and Ms. Jennifer Givner for this latest update, timetable and information and look forward to assisting them in their stated commitment "to getting these donations to the people that need them most." However, we must also note that, once again the Haitian people have been dealt an undeserved blow from those in positions of trust and power, who, for inexplicable reasons, could not, for over two interminable months, properly coordinate this relief effort within a reasonable time frame, get competent assistance with identifying a receiving entity in Haiti or get airspace clearance from the Federal government and thus were unable to deliver relief goods within the urgent parameters hurricane-devastated Haiti demanded and the donors of the goods expected. The organizations that participated in making these

Venecia Lonis, 4, who suffers from malnutrition, is weighed at the Doctors Without Borders hospital in Port-au-Prince, Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2008. Aid workers fear hunger is worsening in rural Haiti after at least 26 children died of conditions exacerbated by a lack of nutrition, raising concerns that a grave food crisis may be brewing following four devastating tropical storms. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)

donations were owed greater care from all the officials involved. To our view at Ezili's HLLN, the role of Bush's federal government and USAID, towards Haiti is capricious, arbitrary and simply untenable. As we've already reported, we were told, upon inquiring why these donations were not flown out as urgency demanded, that the Federal Government declined transport and even when New York offered to pay for transport, their National Guards were denied airspace clearance. This sort of treatment of Haiti and US-Haitians, who were trying to help their families and friends in Haiti with donated relief goods, is confounding, mean-spirited, callous and further underlines the necessity for change, as articulated by President-elect Obama, who has said his administration, shall be "unrelenting in our desire to create a relationship of mutual respect and partnership with countries."
(See, A success story: Relief Goods from New York to Haiti


Now, we'd like knowledgeable members in our Ezili Network to take on the task of asking the foreign NGOs like Catholic Relief Services who will handle these donations in Haiti to commit, to the donating organizations in the Tri-State New York area, to deliver the goods they shall receive to the most vulnerable of victims in Haiti and perhaps provide us with a report of where the items were distributed and how. We'd also like to ask that they work with Madame Alta Jean Baptiste, Director of the Civil Protection and that Director Jean-Baptiste and other important Haitian government officials, charged with storm relief, civil protection and preparedness in Haiti, are not set aside but be intricately involved in the coordination process of these distributions. Our work as Haitian human rights workers, lawyers and activists is to empower civil servants in Haiti not participate in their disempowerment or marginalization, however indirectly. The NGO subcontractors of USAID have a history of supporting coup d'etats and dictatorships, remaining silent while the Haitian masses are being terrorized, thriving from the anarchy through grants of USAID foreign "aid' contracts and approvals, and in the case of certain foreign religious-based NGOs, a history of denying Haiti - a Vodouist, African country - freedom of religion and the right of its own indigenous legacy and culture. And, since a great many of the folks HLLN gives voice to, donated some of these goods, we have a vested interest and would like to be sure their intentions in this matter are respected by organizations such as Catholic Relief Services (CRS). This is an opportunity for these foreign NGOs to begin to change their current reputation with the people on the ground in Haiti and in the Diaspora and lead by showing respect for Haitian leaders and desires to serve the poorest of the poor. That is a matter we shall have to follow up on with your help. Please advise.

Ezili Danto/Marguerite Laurent
Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network
December 11, 2008

HLLN on oversight needed on USAID

Click here for USAID Nov. 14, 2008 report- pdf download

HLLN's counter-colonial narrative on deforestation, Haitian Perspectives, Oct. 25, 2008

Children dying in Haiti, victims of food crisis
Life gets worse for Haiti's hungry children
U.N.: High food prices creating more hunger


Ezili's counter-colonial narrative on Vodun

By Ezili Dantò, Dec. 6, 2008
Background - Vodun Link

A success story: Relief Goods from New York to Haiti



Ezili Dantò on Help for the Hurricane Victims in Haiti, Sept. 12, 2008

Marguerite Laurent/Zili Dantò performs performs the Nago for Breaking Sea Chain (See also Intro to Breaking Sea Chains)



Standing on truth, living without fear – Supporting Barack Obama’s vision of what can be…

The Haitian struggle - the greatest David vs. Goliath battle being played out on this plane


What Haitian-Americans Ask the US Congress and of the New U.S. President

I Don't Know this America...But I'm Most Happy to Meet It

A success story: relief goods from New York to Haiti

Lakou New York's Dahoud Andre and Manno interview with Renold Julien of Konbit Neg Lakay
, Dec. 12, 2008,
Original Source:
Lakou New York Radio Program

The interview is in Kreyol click on:
21.51 - Konbit Neg Lakay Interview


ENGLISH SUMMARY for the Ezili Network English speakers:

(This is just a brief courtesy summary of the interview, not a word-for-word transcription. Please rely only on the original interview for quoting Mr. Julien and the interviewers of Lakou New York).

In this
Interview on Lakou New York Radio Program, aired December 12, 2008, Mr. Renold Julien, the head of Konbit Neg Lakay, a Haitian civic organization from Rockland County, New York, recounts how he got collected donated goods from the Haitian community down to Haiti after the four devastating September storms.

Mr. Julien outlines that, Konbit Neg Lakay and other Haitian organizations got together, collected relief goods and then followed the designated procedures laid down by the Haitian govenment through the Haiti's Civil Protection department for organizations from abroad to use to send relief goods. Mr. Julien worked directly with the New York Haitian consulate, Consul General, Mr. Felix Augustin and they facilitated the paperwork and process with Haiti.

Mr. Julien reported that everything went very well. All their containers reached the storm victims in need in Haiti. Once the Spring Valley New York delegation got to Haiti, the Director of Civil Protection, Madame Alta Jean Baptiste assigned a member of her staff to help them through the process of obtaining the necessary non-profit (Franchise) waiver in order to pass through customs the items in the containers as donated charitable goods. The staff member in charge of Maritime goods, a certain 'Clark' from Civil Protection walked the delegation to the various Ministries to obtain the necessary franchise license so that their containers could clear customs without trouble. This took a day and a half from start to finish to get the containers cleared and start loading them onto distribution trucks. And, pursuant to the designated procedures and policy of Haiti's Civil Protection office and to guarantee no charges of abuse or theft of donated goods, Mr. Julien explained that the containers sent from New York where not opened until the delegation was present.

In the interview, Mr. Julien acknowledged the wonderful job done by the Haitian government in helping the organizations he represented from New York get their donated goods successfully to thestorm victim beneficiaries designated by the New York delegation. He thanks Madame Alta Jean Baptise and her staff at Civil Protection in Haiti for walking the Spring Valley delegation through the process for obtaining released of the goods from customs, loading the trucks used to disseminate the goods. Each truck was accompanied by a member of the Spring Valley delegation and they participated in the distribution of the goods which, Mr. Julien, says was well organized by the Haitian government officials - that is coordinated by Haiti's Civil Protection office between Minister of the Interior and Defense, Minister of Finance, DGE, customs and those at the Warf.

Mr. Renold told Lakou New York listeners that he and the Spring Valley delegation flew down to Haiti, were well assisted by the officials in Haiti, they accompanied the containers personally around to the areas where they were distributed in Haiti. The Haitian delegation from New York delivered goods from New York to areas in Gonaives, Quanaminthe, Jacmel, Lavalai, Benet, Meyai, Bodin…

Each area where the New York goods were distributed were already well organized when the trucks got there, said Mr. Julien. The storm victims came with cards issued by the Haitian government and when their names where called each percon came up and took their portion of food, clothes, water, et al. Mr. Renold says the distributions went well.

Nou rive an Ayiti, pa gen yon moun ki eseye fè yon dola raket sou nou...

Dahoud Andre, the host of Lakou New York asked Mr. Renold Julien to tell Lakou New York listeners the incident he’d previous relayed to him about how a Haitian with a white guy at the customs tried to bribe one of the custom inspector to let their organizations’ containers through inspection without opening them.

Answering Dahoud’s question, Mr. Renold Julien recounts that he was standing right there when– “te gen blan avek yon òganizasyon an Ayiti – there where whites with an organization in Haiti... they claimed that their containers had provisions with a value of $9million dollars and offered the young Haitian inspector $300,000 US dollars to let the containers through without opening them." Mr. Julien said he wanted to emphasize this for the Haitian community to stop believing when Haiti is being denigrated and demeaned. He said that he was very glad, Dahoud Andre, brought up this incident, because, Mr. Julien explained, “in a country with such poverty and misery as Haiti, I was so proud to hear the very young Haitian inspector" turn the men down flat. Mr. Renold Julien, explained he heard the bribe being offered himself by this white organization in Haiti with his own two ears and so did the other members of the Spring Valley delegation who were present.

Again, this is a summary to reach out and include our English-only speakers, not a word-for-word transcription. Please rely only on the original interview for quoting Mr. Julien and the interviewers at Lakou New York.

The interview is in Kreyol and is well worth listening to. click on:

21.51 - Konbit Neg Lakay Interview

Ezili Dantò/HLLN
December 12, 2008

See :

Paterson's Timeline for delivery of donated goods for Haiti storm victims

Dessalines Is Rising!!
Ayisyen: You Are Not Alone!

"When you make a choice, you mobilize vast human energies and resources which otherwise go untapped...........If you limit your choices only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want and all that is left is a compromise." Robert Fritz

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