UUSC Responds to Escalating Crisis in Haiti

Challenging Injustice, Advancing Human Rights

The Unitarian Universalist Service Committee advances human rights through grassroots collaborations.

Nearly 60 Faith-Based Organizations Tell Biden Administration: “Ukraine Isn’t the Only Nation in Need of Our Compassion”

United States has a “moral mandate” to ensure Haiti’s constitutional democracy is protected
March 10, 2022

Cambridge, MA—As human rights advocates and activists observe the United States’ questionable allegiance to Haitian Prime Minister Ariel Henry, a group of nearly 60 faith-based organizations have come together to demand the United States government re-commit to a strong democracy in Haiti. Most importantly, these organizations are asking that the United States support the Montana Accord, a collaborative agreement among Haitian civil society organizations establishing a clear and equitable path to constitutional leadership in Haiti.

The nation of Haiti is experiencing a political crisis rife with violence, corruption, and the displacement of thousands of people. In the wake of the assassination of former President Jovenel Moïse in July 2021 and a deadly and destructive earthquake in August, people of faith and conscience are calling on the U.S. government to help re-stabilize Haiti by respecting its constitutional democracy. Prime Minister Ariel Henry—allegedly involved in Moïse’s murder—has spent the last eight months attempting to keep himself in office, even going so far as to ignore demands that he step down on the last day of his tenure on February 7 and resisting pleas that he allow a transitional government to oversee the nation until elections can be held.

As Henry becomes increasingly despotic and attempts to keep himself in power, the United States enthusiastically supports his leadership and comes dangerously close to endorsing an unconstitutional power play. In response, the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC) authored and shared a powerful letter to key members of the U.S. State Department and National Security Council to acknowledge, respect, and support the Montana-PEN Accord. Rev. Mary Katherine Morn, Lead Executive Officer and President of UUSC, issued the following statement:

“The Montana-PEN Accord is a ‘ground-up’ solution developed by the The Commission for a Haitian Solution to the Crisis, a powerful group of civil Haitian civil society organizations offering a plan for the nation that reflects and respects the will of Haiti’s people. Now is not the time for political posturing or superficial platitudes. The United States is well within its rights to support a process that is rooted in Haiti’s constitution rather than the agenda of a career politician looking to enshrine himself in the country’s highest office. As the world sends its compassion, prayers, and well wishes to Ukraine, we cannot forget that 5,800 miles away across the Atlantic Ocean is a nation facing just as much violence, uncertainty, and instability.

“UUSC is proud to support the Commission and join with other faith organizations and leaders in calling for the Biden administration to listen to the people fighting for their nation and their democracy.”

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The Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC) is a human rights and solidarity organization founded as a rescue mission in 1940 during the Holocaust. Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and with a membership of more than 35,000 supporters across the United States, UUSC’s programs focus on the issues of climate and disaster justice, migrant justice, and international justice and accountability.

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