• Alea Pleiner
4. semester, Global Refugee Studies, Kandidat (Kandidatuddannelse)
Along the border in the South-East region of Haiti, six makeshift settlements have emerged since June 2015 with more than 2,000 inhabitants. They consist of more than 90% coming from the Dominican Republic, either deported or spontaneously-returned; many of them left “stateless” due to recent changes in Dominican Republic immigration and citizenship laws. Inside the camps, residents have faced harsh conditions and challenges on a daily basis.

This thesis seeks to explore why the people of Dominican-Haitian background in the camps at the Haitian border are stuck within their limited situation and how they navigate their daily lives within these boundaries.

The thesis starts with setting a methodological framework and then establishing an understanding of the history of Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Subsequently, the analysis consists of two chapters:
In the first one, I argue that the many levels of social exclusion is keeping people in their situation, due to economic, social and political deprivations. Facing so many limitations in the camps, starting from lacking access to income, basic living commodities or social ties to restrictions of certain rights, it is a difficult endeavor to escape the cycle of exclusion by oneself. The second one explores different factors of exclusion through people’s experience of a liminal phase, the phase they are stuck between statuses. Having the threat of the current camp living situation turning into a permanent condition, people face emotions ranging from frustration to despair. I argue that, people have established different kind of navigation mechanisms within their limited scope, which enables them to cope with their situation of stuckness and uncertainty.

The findings on this thesis are based on qualitative data collection methods. I conducted seven interviews with people living in the camp, one interview with the local mayor of the Haitian border commune Anse-a-Pitres that is close to the campsites, and one interview with the project coordinator of the Batey Relief Alliance (BRA) that has various projects implemented in the camps. Furthermore I back up my findings and conclusions with secondary data, using various theories and concepts.

The findings produced throughout this thesis contribute to a better understanding of the structures and the dynamics in the camps at the Haitian border, the effects it has on the inhabitants and the choices they make to navigate within their limits.
Udgivelsesdato31 jul. 2017
Antal sider96
ID: 261146117