SoulFood Films

Like many cinematic love stories, Rachelle Salnave’s romance begins with an intense dislike bordering on hatred.

As a kid, the 40-year-old filmmaker explains in her self-narrated documentary, she didn’t want anyone knowing she was Haitian, owing to the negative media portrayals of people from the Caribbean country.

“They called us boat people!” Salnave exclaims. “The media constantly portrayed Haiti’s poverty, and the CDC even listed Haiti as the origin of the HIV/AIDS epidemic.”

Nadege Green / WLRN

For years, Marie Alina Cajuste did not know her real name. The family she worked for in Haiti called her Ti Bebe, or Little Baby.

She shared her experience as a restavec at a day-long conference about human trafficking at Broward College Thursday.

“It’s slavery,” she said. “I couldn't sleep in the same house with the family, I was the first person to wake up and buckets of clothes waiting for me to wash by hand.”

Nadege Green / WLRN

After the deadly 2010 Haiti earthquake, the United States halted all deportations to the island nation.

One year later, deportations resumed to Haiti amid a deadly cholera outbreak.

Wildrick Guerrier was one of 27 men deported to Haiti from the U.S. on Jan 20, 2011, according to a recently released study by human rights groups that documents the impact of returning deportees to a post-earthquake Haiti.

Guerrier developed cholera-like symptoms after being jailed in Haiti, a customary practice when deportees return. One week after his arrival, he died.

Tim Padgett / WLRN

Haiti is no stranger to trauma – as we were reminded on Tuesday, when a power-line accident and the ensuing panic killed 16 people during Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince.

Florida Roundup: Cuban Adjustment Act

Jan 16, 2015
Don McDougall / flickr Creative Commons

On the Florida Roundup we talk to the area's journalists about the week's top stories. 

Cuban Adjustment Act

A Sun-Sentinel yearlong investigation finds more than $2 billion within two decades was fraudulently brought into Cuba and how the Cuban Adjustment Act plays a role in letting the criminals get away without prosecution. 


Nonprofit organization Color of Hope is remembering the victims of the 2010 Haiti earthquake by updating a digital memorial wall with 12 names every hour on Monday, Jan. 12.

Five years ago, the disaster ended over 300,000 lives -- and Color of Hope has been maintaining a memorial ever since. The wall can be found at 112haiti.com.

Ed Shakespierre, the organization’s founder, sought to represent victims who he says may have remained nameless otherwise.

Patrick Farrell / Miami Herald

Five years ago today Haiti – the western hemisphere’s poorest country – was devastated by an earthquake that killed some 300,000 people. Haitian officials, the U.S. and other donor countries promised to “build back Haiti better.” But so far the question is whether they’ve been able to build back Haiti… much at all.

Patrick Farrell / Miami Herald

Monsignor Augustin Almy was in Haiti five years ago when the earthquake hit. When the country’s Catholic Church fell apart along with most of Port-au-Prince on Jan. 12, 2010.

Almy, a priest at St. James Catholic Church in North Miami, was visiting Haiti for his mother’s 100th birthday.

He was in his room at the Port-au-Prince seminary where he worked for years before moving to South Florida.

“I see the house shaking,” he said.

It was 4:53 pm.

Florida Roundup: Marriages And Revisiting Haiti

Jan 9, 2015
Charles Trainor Jr. / Miami Herald

On the Florida Roundup, we discuss the important news of the week with the area's journalists. 


This week same-sex couples across Florida were able to get a marriage license, the same time the Supreme Court may decide the issue for the entire nation or continue to leave it on a state-by-state basis.


Florida Roundup: Eyes On Cuba

Dec 19, 2014
Al Diaz / Miami Herald

U.S.-Cuba Relations

Patrick Farrell / Miami Herald

Yesterday’s resignation of Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe was supposed to help end Haiti’s long and sometimes violent political crisis. Don’t get your hopes up.

Most Haitians weren’t even awake when Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe’s taped resignation speech was televised at 2 a.m. Sunday morning. The government blamed technical difficulties for the delay.

Florida Roundup: Police Behavior

Dec 12, 2014
Scott For Florida

Update: Due to many calls and comments, this entire edition of the Florida Roundup discussed renewed police scrutiny. 


South Florida demonstrators marched against police-related violence last weekend. More protests are planned after a street artist died running from police and getting hit by an unmarked Miami squad car. 


Today on WLRN-Miami Herald News, you heard:

Nadege Green / WLRN

Before Cardinal Chibly Langlois celebrated Mass at Notre Dame D’Haiti Catholic Church in Little Haiti, he took it all in.

A banner with his likeness hung from a black fence.

Parishioners wore yellow T-shirts with a picture of his face on the front and on the back, a message in Creole thanking God for blessing them with the first-ever Haitian cardinal.

Earlier this year, Pope Francis named Langlois cardinal, making him the first Haitian in history to hold that post.

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