An advisory panel looking into ways the state of Florida can assist Haiti has released its recommendations. Governor Jeb Bush established the Haiti Commission last year. Its focus is on finding ways the state – and the estimated 400,000 Haitian-Americans & Haitian nationals living in Florida – can help the poorest nation in the western hemisphere.
Recommendations include: using Florida law enforcement to help train Haiti’s national police force; providing assistance during upcoming elections; and using resources at state university’s to address Haiti’s widespread deforestation. Much needs to be done. Former Naples resident – Sister Judy Doaner – runs a children’s hospital in Haiti’s capital, Port Au Prince.
She says there is no stability…and day-to-day operations at the hospital are chaotic…
“The first thing, every morning someone comes in my office and says we don’t have something…we can’t find powdered milk in the country. One day the company that provides our oxygen had been filled with people demonstrating, so we couldn’t get in to get oxygen for the children. So each day, I’m not sure what the crisis will be.”
Doaner says just last week a doctor's husband was kidnapped, and they were forced to pay nearly $50,000 to free him. Two days later, the brother of the hospital’s head nurse was killed in a demonstration. More than 400 people have been killed in clashes between gangs, former police and UN peacekeepers since the commission was established last September.
Thursday, 12 May 2005 01:00