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Haiti: A natural and human-made catastrophe combine (Green Left)

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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-17-10 04:54 AM
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Haiti: A natural and human-made catastrophe combine (Green Left)
Peter Hallward
15 January 2010

... Since the late 1970s, relentless neoliberal assaults on Haiti's agrarian economy has forced tens of thousands of small farmers into overcrowded urban slums.

Although there are no reliable statistics, hundreds of thousands of Port-au-Prince residents now live in desperately sub-standard informal housing, often perched precariously on the side of deforested ravines.

The selection of the people living in such places and conditions is itself no more natural or accidental than the extent of the injuries they have suffered.

As Brian Concannon, the director of the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti, said: Those people got there because they or their parents were intentionally pushed out of the countryside by aid and trade policies specifically designed to create a large captive and therefore exploitable labour force in the cities; by definition they are people who would not be able to afford to build earthquake resistant houses" ...

http://www.greenleft.org.au/2010/822/42255
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