Stories written by Elizabeth Eames Roebling

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Women Challenge Monopoly on “Men’s Jobs”

From a small office inside a public school on the eastern side of the Rio Ozama in the capital Santo Domingo, a programme operated by a local NGO, Ce-Mujer, has been leading a quiet revolution to empower women in the workplace for the last 13 years.

On a small holding of one hectare, a farmer can plant about 200 trees, for an anticipated first harvest price of 2,500 dollars. Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Macadamia Trees Offer Lifeline to Small Farmers

A project to help reforest after the devastation of Hurricane David 32 years ago has grown into a plan to lift small coffee farmers out of poverty, all by the introduction of a gourmet ice cream.

All the factory floor workers at AltaGracia are paid the same wage, 527 dollars a month, 333 percent of the legal minimum wage. Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Model Factory Enshrines Workers’ Rights

Two years ago, Knights Apparel, based in the U.S. state of South Carolina, decided to lead the race to the top by opening a factory that not only paid its employees a living wage but guaranteed their rights to a union.

Protesters outside of the Palacio Nacional. Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Four Percent for Education

The government of the Dominican Republic, where one-third of the population of is under 14 years of age, is facing a well- organised and growing citizens' campaign to increase the amount spent on public education.


At first glance, the Dominican Republic appears to be a bastion of free information, with seven print dailies and seven national television stations. But journalists here say that more subtle means of coercion have become the norm.

Fishers and traders on the Haiti-Dominican Republic border say they have been hit hard by the cholera epidemic. Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS

HAITI-DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Cholera Chokes Off Border Trade

The cholera epidemic ravaging Haiti has affected even this small southern border town, which lived primarily from the trade with its neighbour even though it counts for less than five percent of the cross-border market trade.

Haitian mothers in the waiting area of the Nuestra Senora de Altagracia hospital. Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS

Haitian Mothers Find Care in Dominican Republic, but Future Is Bleak

In the spacious lobby of the Nuestra Señora de Altagracia maternity hospital, more than a hundred people wait quietly in chairs, overlooked by a 20-foot-high coloured mosaic inset portraying the patron saint of the Dominican Republic.

A child amputee sits up in her hospital bed in Jacmel, Haiti. The Dominican Republic provided the first aid to the devastated southern city. Credit: UN Photo/Marco Dormino

HAITI: Tensions Put on Hold as Dominican Republic Reaches Out

Despite a history of often tense relations, the first nation to render assistance to Haiti after last month's devastating earthquake was its island neighbour, the Dominican Republic.

A grizzly scene marks the road to mass graves holding hundreds of bodies near Port-au-Prince. Credit: UN Photo/Logan Abassi

HAITI-DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Sisters in Catastrophe

The Dominican Republic, which has historically regarded its Haitian neighbour with suspicion, has turned toward Haiti with a tremendous outpouring of aid and love since a devastating earthquake rocked Port-au-Prince on Tuesday.


Dominicans have an extraordinary passion for baseball. All young boys play the game, sometimes with uniforms and equipment on a town baseball diamond, sometimes using coconut shells and old planks as ball and bat on an empty street or sand lot.

Women march against the anti-abortion law in Santo Domingo in April 2009. Credit: Elizabeth Roebling/IPS

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Women Facing Increased Risk

Dominican organisations focused on the rights of women are bringing in assistance from all over Latin America to aid them in their fight against Article 30 in the recently approved constitution which states that the right to life is inviolable from conception until death.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Protests Surround New Constitution

The Dominican Republic passed the 38th version of its constitution Thursday evening, amending more than 40 articles that drew public protests and opposition from civil society groups and many average Dominicans.

HAITI: Export Workers Await Overdue Wage Increase

Following the recommendation of President Rene Preval, the lower house of the Haitian Parliament voted Tuesday to raise the minimum wage in the assembly sector from 1.29 dollars (70 gourde) to only 3.20 dollars (125 gourde) per day, rather than the 5.12 dollars (200 gourde) which had been demanded and passed.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Losing Freedom, But Not Dignity

If you are a woman in prison anywhere in the world, you would be fortunate to be in one of the new model prisons in the Dominican Republic.

Mercedes Berenice Pérez runs a small beauty saloon. "All the businesses are affected by the crisis in remittances" Credit: Willian Silveira/IPS

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Remittance Crunch, But Women Migrants Keep Sending

Among the colourful houses in the neighbourhood called Vietnam in East Santo Domingo, many families have at least one family member among the 1.5 million Dominicans living abroad.

Going to market in Belledare, Haiti.  Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC/HAITI: Border Market Embodies Inequalities

Elias Pina sits in a fertile high mountain valley on the border between the Dominican Republic and Haiti. Twice weekly, the side streets fill with Haitians and Dominicans trading produce, used clothing, kitchen equipment and shoes.

Women march against the new anti-abortion law in Santo Domingo. Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Church Pushes Draconian Abortion Law

A truck full of female police officers, dressed in black riot protection gear, pulled up in front of the General Assembly building here to confront and control the crowd of women who had gathered on Tuesday to protest a "right to life" amendment to the Dominican constitution.

Even relatively well-educated Haitians, like the members of this neighbourhood association, say they face daily abuses in the Dominican Republic.  Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS


On a rainy Saturday evening, beneath the leaking tin roof of an empty carport in a working class section of Santo Domingo, a group of Haitian immigrants met to form a neighbours' association.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Carving up Paradise

Located along white sand beaches on the north coast of the lush Samana peninsula, this is the latest Dominican boom town. Entering the town from across the high mountains, developers' signs are perched on the steep hills, with prices in dollars, promising a piece of paradise.

More than 100 Dominican women have been killed by their partners so far this year. Credit: Elizabeth Eames Roebling/IPS

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Marching Against Machismo

Raising their voices in agreement with the declaration over the loudspeaker that "machismo kills", hundreds of Dominican women, carrying banners and roses, ended a march through the streets of Santo Domingo Tuesday in front of the Supreme Court Building, protesting the rising level of murders of women.

A group of Haitian journalists meets their Dominican colleagues at a three-day gathering to promote cross-cultural understanding. Credit: Elizabeth Roebling/IPS

HAITI-DOMINICAN REPUBLIC: Media Unites to Fight Stereotypes

The contrast between Haiti and the Dominican Republic, which share the island of Hispaniola, is nowhere so stark as on its common border.

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