Boston - Haiti Observer Blog

Boston, Haiti Observer Blog. Read the following articles about Boston


Haitian, the Third Most Populous Foreign-Born In Boston

A December 2015 report prepared by the Boston Redevelopment Authority Research Division reveals that Boston is the 7th largest home for foreign-born residents among the 25 largest U.S. cities. Between 2000 and 2014, its foreign-born population grew from 151,836 to 177,461, an increase from earlier 19.2% to present 27.1%. The top six countries of origin for the foreign born population living in Boston in 2014 were as follows: Dominican Republic 13.0%, China 10.6%, Haiti 7.6%, El Salvador 6.3%, Vietnam 6.2% and Jamaica 4.4%. Haitian migration to the U.S was very small (around 5,000) in 1960. Recent data from the U.S Census Bureau on American Community Surveys show that the Haitian immigrant population numbers between the years 1980 and 2012 in the U.S were as follows: 92,000 (1980), 225,000 (1990), 419,000 (2000), 510,000 (2006), 587,000 (2010) and 606,000 (2012). Five metro areas, such as greater Miami, New York, Boston, Orlando, and Atlanta account for nearly three-quarters of the total immigrant population from Haiti residing in the United States. Haitians are the third most populous foreign-born demographic residents of Boston. On the language front, with its 4.2% share, French Creole is the third most common non-English language spoken at home and it is followed by Spanish 16.3% and Chinese 4.6%.

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Haiti Tourism Minister, Stephanie Balmir Villedrouin, visites Boston and Brockton

Stéphanie Balmir Villedrouin, the Haitian Minister of Tourism and Creative Industries visited Boston and Brockton on Wednesday, June 3 on a national tour, accompanying a team of tourism officials and hoteliers. The main purpose of her visit was to boost the tourism trade in Haiti from the United States. Mrs. Villedrouin made a presentation to an audience of Haitian American activists at the Thorny Lea Country Club in Brockton on Wednesday evening. She has pointed out the significant increase in the number of visitors to Haiti in the last two years. The 2013-14 has shown an increase by 11% in the visitor number. Her trip was luckily coincided with the milestone launch of JetBlue's first ever direct flights between Boston and Port-au-Prince on June 17.

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Sick Haitian woman, mistaken for Liberian Ebola patient, caused total panic

This is getting from bad to worst and out of hands. The Ebola epidemic is a great concern; however it seems that the behavior of the population might be even more of a concern. Did you know that an Ebola scare at a Train Station in Boston forced the MBTA to temporarily suspend services. A sick Haitian woman who was sick and vomiting was assumed to be Liberian and that her illness was Ebola.

According to the Boston magazine reported, some blood was visible in the woman's vomit. The call to the emergency team stated that a Liberian woman was observer to be sick, vomiting and could be infected with the deadly ebola virus.

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Haitian Studies Association welcomed over 250 scholars

After a quarter century, the contributions made to Haiti's academic patrimony by the Haitian Studies Association have been rightly celebrated by 9 past presidents, 250 current scholars and various organizers, activists, practitioners and researchers in the field at the annual conference held November 7th to 9th.

On the occasion, various panels were held covering topics such as history, literature and even Haitian vodou. Speeches were given, including one by Michele Pierre-Louis, former prime minister, and two sessions were held on the work of the late Michel-Rolph Trouillot who was a respected anthropologist.

Vivian Gautier, ninety-six years old, received an award for her contributions to the promotion of Haitian dance for over 70 years. Also awarded were filmmaker Arnold Antonin, playwright and author Franketienne and authors Georges Eddy Lucien and Kate Ramsey.

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Jean-Claude Sanon keeps his Eyes on the Prize, the District Five Seat

Jean-Claude Sanon, Haitian-American activist, is making his second run for elective office this November. His first run was in 2009 for a council seat. This time Sanon will run for District Five seat in Boston. The opportunity to run occurred in early 2013 when Rob Consalvo vacated the seat to make a Mayoral run. Sanon's opponent for District Five seat is Tim McCarthy. McCarthy's run for the seat will be his first try at elective office.

Although Jean-Claude Sanon trailed McCarthy in the number of votes he received in the preliminary election, he will get some wind beneath his wings, through the City Council re-districting of District Five. It includes Mattapan, largely Haitian-American, which has been enlarged. Sanon could outpace McCarthy, even though McCarthy's war chest is seven times the size of Sanon's according to figures released in the last half of October.

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Massachusetts first to elect Senator of Haitian descent in US, Linda Dorcena Forry

Haitian-American Linda Dorcéna Forry has been named the Senator for the 1st Suffolk District in the Massachusetts State Senate. On Tuesday the 28th of May 2013, Forry, a Democratic member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, representing her district since 2005, beat Republican Joseph Anthony Ureneck for the seat by a whopping 82% of over 9,600 votes. Her victory is a considerable one as it marks the first time a person of Haitian descent has been elected the U.S. Senate.

Linda Dorcéna Forry was born in Boston in 1973. She attended the ST. Kevin Grammar School and then the Monsignor Ryan Memorial High School. Her alma mater was Boston College, where she studied business management before working as a legislative assistant. In 1999 she left the State House to work for the City of Boston's Department of Neighborhood Development's executive staff and she rose to become the Acting Chief of Staff.

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Prince Saunders and his contribution to Haiti

Born in the United States in 1775, Prince Saunders used the luck he found early in life to help blacks during a time of rampant racism and ignorance. Raised and later sent to university by George Oramel Hinckley, a white lawyer, Saunders was given the type of education coveted by many regardless of color or circumstance.

At 21, after attending Darthmouth College, Saunders was helped by college president John Wheelock into a teaching position at a school for African-Americans and joined a Masonic lodge, wherein he would soon rise to become the secretary.

During this early stage of his teaching career, Saunders persuaded Abiel Smith, a white merchant, to issue grants supporting black education. This endowment was granted and continued even after Smiths death, until the city taxes in Boston began giving support.

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Valerie Rateau from Mirebalais among the victims of Boston double explosion

Boston Marathon, one of the world's largest and oldest marathons, experienced a deadly climax when, with over 27,000 participants closing up on the finish line, two devices detonated without warning claiming 3 lives and leaving behind more than 100 injured. The sidewalks that were crowded with over 500,000 visitors was suddenly stained with blood and with several victims suffering from traumatic amputation.

Among the deceased was a boy of 8 years. Many other children and adults were rushed to the hospitals in critical conditions. Boylston Street, which was cheering up the international participants, suddenly turned into a container of random chaos followed by a graveyard silence. Officials have found out that the detonations were caused by gunpowder acting as explosives with shrapnel and ball bearing maximizing the impact.

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The power of Radio in the Haitian Society

Haitian radio is the chief means of media communication on the island. Few have income to buy a TV, and those who have sets are subject to unreliable electricity service. Going online to access news coverage is impossible for all but the rich. Not only is newspaper distribution minimal, but 80% of the population are illiterate. The only information source available to everyone is the radio and radio stations are plentiful in Haiti. Reception is widely accessible in virtually every village on the island. Radios cost little to own and run on batteries.

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Presidential Advisor Ronald "Roro" Nelson Defends His Reputation

Ronald Nelson, known by his popular name Roro Nelson, advisor to President Michel Martelly, has been accused of three separate incidences of violence he is alleged to have committed, one involving an ex-girlfriend. Speaking at a press conference, he refuted all charges against him, blaming the Haiti press for printing lies, damaging his reputation.

His ex, Astride Pantal, accused him of an assault to her person with a deadly weapon, which he denies. But the Dorchester County, Massachusetts Court has put him on probation for the incident. In another violent episode, a woman accused Ronald Nelson of pulling out a hand-gun and threatening her with it.

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