But for all the outrage, he's not wrong. Haiti is a terrible place. Compare it to the Dominican Republic which is the other half of the same island and draw your own conclusions.
If the U.N. wants to condemn something, it shouldn't the President who was impolitic enough to speak the unvarnished truth. They should condemn the government of Haiti, go in, take over, and rescue the next generation of Haitians. The cleanup alone will take decades. Rebuilding the government, educating the populace, and creating a sustainable economy could occupy the U.N. for the rest of the century.
And just to be clear, if I was a Haitian, I'd be trying to get to the United States too. We'll know that the U.N. effort was successful when people from the United States are trying to sneak into Haiti.
And because a picture is worth a thousand words:
- Haiti ranks 168 out of 187 on the 2014 Human Development Index (UNDP 2015)
- Gross National Income per capita (at Purchase Power Parity) is $1730. The average for Caribbean/Latin American developing countries is $14,098. (World Bank 2014)
- 59% of the population lives on less than US$2 per day (World Bank 2012)
- 24.7% lives in extreme poverty on less than US$1.25 per day. (UNDP 2013)
- Over two-thirds of the labor force do not have formal jobs. (CIA Factbook 2014)
- 50 percent of children do not attend school. (World Bank 2013)
- Approximately 30% of children attending primary school will not make it to third grade; 60% will abandon school before sixth grade. (UNICEF 2008)
- Only 29 percent of Haitians 25 and above attended secondary school. (USAID 2015)
- Almost 80 percent of teachers have not received any pre-service training. (USAID 2015)
- Half of public sector teachers in Haiti lack basic qualifications. (USAID 2015)
- 90% of primary schools are non-public and managed by communities, religious organizations or NGOs. (USAID 2007)
Health & Nutrition
- Life expectancy is 63 years. (World Bank 2013)
- 30% of the population is considered food insecure. (World Food Programme 2015)
- Infant mortality: 55 per 1000 births (UNICEF 2015)
- 59 per 1,000 born in Haiti die before reaching their first birthday (Ministry of Health 2012)
- Under five mortality rate: 88 per 1000 live births (Ministry of Health 2012)
- “An estimated 1 in 285 births will result in a woman’s death, a ratio about 16 times higher than in the United States.” (Partners in Health 2014)
- Prevalence of stunting (moderate to severe) is 22%. (UNICEF 2015)