A journalist was killed and five workers were injured in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, on 23 February 2022 when police opened fire on peaceful demonstrators opposing the amount of the meagre wage increase announced by the government following weeks of protest. The cost of living has been steadily increasing in Haiti and violence has pervaded the country as gangs often wielded more power than the government.
Violent attacks on workers
On 10 February 2022, for the second day in a row, police fired tear gas and beat protestors with batons outside the SONAPI Free Trade Zone in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Striking workers were calling on Prime Minster Ariel Henry to increase the minimum wage in the garment industry from 500 gourdes a day (US$4.80) to 1,500 gourdes.
Dismissals for participating in strike action
In early 2022, Centri GroupS.A. in Haiti dismissed some 60 workers for protesting at unfair wage practices in the garment sector. In January 2022, a coalition of unions had called on the prime minister to increase the minimum wage in the garment industry from 500 gourdes a day (US$4.80) to 1,500 gourdes. The protests were brutally repressed by the police, who fired tear gas and beat protestors with batons outside the SONAPI free trade zone in Port-au-Prince.
In recent months, inflation in Haiti has reached 23 per cent. In the garment sector, wages have stayed the same for the past three years, and workers earn less than a third of what they need to in order to survive.