Expert Workshop on Resolving the Cholera Crisis in Haiti

Social Sciences
Monday 7th December 2015 (00:00)
Download the date to your calendar (.ics file)

Dr. Rosa Freedman and Dr. Nicolas Lemay-Hébert, with the support of the University of Birmingham  will convene an Expert Workshop on 07 December 2015. The event provides a unique opportunity to bring together leading experts to develop the structure and substance of a potential remedial framework grounded in international law, reflective of policy concerns, responsive to the rights of victims of the cholera epidemic, and respectful of the legal and policy concerns of the UN.

This workshop will be working on Chatham House Rules and won't be open to public, but the outcome document will be made available as soon as possible after the event.

The expert workshop will center on the structure, process and substance of remedies for the cholera victims. In light of the determination made by the UN's Independent Panel of Experts that "personnel associated with the Mirebalais MINUSTAH facility were the most likely source of introduction of cholera into Haiti," the workshop will not examine the origins of the epidemic. Nor will the workshop address technical aspects of improving access to water and sanitation, given that the UN has publicly endorsed the Initiative for the Elimination of Cholera in the Island of Hispaniola as developed by the governments of Haiti and the Dominican Republic.

Key questions to be addressed by the Expert Workshop:

  • What components would an ideal resolution framework include?
  • Are there processes that need to be established to determine what remedies should be provided?
  • Is compensation desirable? If so, what might a compensation framework look like? How would it be structured and implemented in the Haitian context?
  • Is a public acknowledgement of responsibility or apology from the UN desirable? If so, what might such a statement look like?
  • What would be required in terms of political and financial investment to operationalize the Initiative for the Elimination of Cholera in the Island of Hispaniola, as drafted by the Haitian and Dominican governments in 2012?
  • What structures and processes would need to be put in place in order for remedies to be administered?
  • What are other actions are necessary to advance resolution efforts and break out of the current impasse?

Scholarship by Workshop Convenors

R. Freedman and N. Lemay-Hébert, ‘”Jistis ak reparasyon pou tout viktim kolera MINUSTAH”: The United Nations and the Right to Health in Haiti’ Leiden Journal of International Law (2015), 507-527

R. Freedman and N. Lemay-Hébert, ‘Towards an alternative interpretation of UN immunity: A human rights-based approach to the Haiti Cholera Case’, QIL-Questions of International Law, Zoom-in 19, (2015), 5-18 (with Nicolas Lemay-Hebert) (paper by invitation)

R. Freedman, 'UN Immunity or Impunity?: A human rights based challenge’, 25 (1)  European Journal of International Law, (2014), 239–254

N. Lemay-Hébert, Resistance in the Time of Cholera: The Limits of Stabilization through Securitization in Haiti, 21 (2) International Peacekeeping (2014), 198-213.