January 22, 2007
traveled to Haiti earlier this month to meet with President Preval and
others in his administration. During my visit, we discussed various matters
of concern not only to the Haitian-American community, but also to Haiti's
Also regarding security, President Preval told me
that the United Nations' peacekeeping troops that have been on the
island as part of the mission to stabilize Haiti will remain there for
at least another year. These troops are sharing resources and coordinating
with the National Police to provide safety and security for all the residents
of the island.
Regarding economic development, an estimated 30,000
jobs in the textile mills will be coming on line because of favorable
trade provisions in the HOPE Act Congress passed last year. I urged President
Preval to move quickly through the certification process so that Haiti
can see the benefits of this legislation.
We all know Haiti has desperate needs in health
care, desperate needs in infrastructure, and desperate needs in education.
But I was reminded again and again during my visit of the tenacity of
the Haitian people. They are ingenious, industrious, and entrepreneurial.
President Preval expressed his desire for Haitians living outside their
homeland to come home and join him in rebuilding Haiti's economy and
Please feel free to share this news with your friends and colleagues who share our commitment to Haiti and its people.