Still Trembling: State Obligation Under International Law to End Post-Earthquake Rape in Haiti

27 Pages Posted: 27 Apr 2016 Last revised: 28 Apr 2016

See all articles by Lisa Davis

Lisa Davis

CUNY School of Law; Human Rights and Gender Justice Clinic

Date Written: April 1, 2011

Abstract

This Article argues that the right to be free from sexual violence committed by third-party perpetrators is not only required under Haitian domestic and international law but is also a mandatory obligation for States to enforce. The Article examines how post-earthquake conditions in Haiti have left women and girls in a heightened state of vulnerability as well as the ineffectiveness of the U.N. and government to uphold obligations under international law to include grassroots women’s leadership in the planning and implementation sessions to address sexual violence in displacement camps. First, this Article provides a brief overview to pre- and post-earthquake responses to sexual violence in Haiti, and then an overview of sexual violence and the vulnerability of women and girls since the earthquake. Next, this Article discusses Haiti’s obligations under international and regional law to protect women and girls from violence committed by private actors as well as the obligation to include their voices in plans for combating gender-based violence. Finally, this Article examines the recent decision for precautionary measures granted by the IACHR to address sexual violence in 22 Haitian displacement camps and how this decision must be implemented by donor States through building the capacity of the Haitian government and Haitian civil society in order to end the epidemic of post-earthquake sexual violence.

Keywords: Haiti, Rape, Sexual Violence, International, Human Rights, Women's Rights, women, disaster, 1325, earthquake, international law, human rights

JEL Classification: K33, K40, K30, K10, N46, R58, D74

Suggested Citation

Davis, Lisa, Still Trembling: State Obligation Under International Law to End Post-Earthquake Rape in Haiti (April 1, 2011). University of Miami Law Review, Vol. 65, No. 867, 2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2769596

Lisa Davis (Contact Author)

CUNY School of Law ( email )

Court Square Law Project
Long Island City, NY 11101
United States

Human Rights and Gender Justice Clinic ( email )

2 Court Square
Long Island City, NY 11101
United States

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