Haiti: More than 60% of forced displacements happened in 2023, a year of growing brutality

A group of displaced people hosted in a school in the center of Port-au-Prince, in site Jean-Marie Vincent.

Haiti: More than 60% of forced displacements happened in 2023, a year of growing brutality

Port-au-Prince – The International Organization for Migration (IOM) has released its latest assessment of internal displacements in Haiti, reflecting the severity of the ongoing crisis. As of December 2023, more than 310,000 people are internally displaced. Of the currently internally displaced people in Haiti, more than half faced displacement in 2023, illustrating the ever-worsening security and humanitarian situation, especially in the capital Port-au-Prince. Concerningly, children make up a high number of the displaced.

The assessment used IOM’s Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) and is a joint effort with the Haitian Directorate-General for Civil Protection (Direction générale de la Protection civile, DGPC). The exercise covered seven of the ten Haitian departments - three more departments compared to November 2022, with the goal of covering all ten departments by the end of 2024. The departments covered in this report are Artibonite, Centre, Grand’Anse, Nippes, Ouest, Sud, and Sud Est.

The violence engulfing the Port-au-Prince Metropolitan Area is the result of conflict between gangs, racketeering, kidnappings and wider criminal acts. The extreme brutality faced by Haitians aggravates deep inequalities, high levels of deprivation of basic human needs and a fragmented security environment. 94% of internally displaced people in Haiti originated from the Ouest department, with the capital being the primary source.

The IOM assessment shows that women, children and men have been forced to leave their homes seeking shelter away from violence and destruction. More than half of them, 172,300, are children, a particularly vulnerable group. In the face of emergencies, the first responders are usually local communities, the data shows that outside the capital, host families accommodate people displaced. The figures for the Port-au-Prince metropolitan area paint a different picture, with only 45 per cent of IDPs taken in by host communities, with a worrying downward trend demonstrating the deteriorating situation for the whole population including host families and their coping capacity.

“The trend of forced displacement is showcasing an ever-deteriorating security and humanitarian situation. While humanitarians keep on doing their utmost to provide life-saving assistance and support, humanitarian aid is not the sole solution. More investments are needed in long-term solutions to strengthen State services across the country.” reminded Philippe Branchat, IOM’s chief in Haiti.
Haiti faces a multi-dimensional crisis. Not only is the country regularly affected by natural hazards, such as earthquakes, storms and floods, but it is also affected by violence spread by hundreds of gangs mostly in the metropolitan area of Port-au-Prince but also expanding in the provinces.

Despite the deteriorating security situation in the capital, IOM and its partners, authorities, and local leaders, continue to deliver assistance where it is mostly needed, contributing to ensuring protection of the most vulnerable people on the move, such as young women, children, elderly, and people with disability.

IOM has been present in Haiti since 1994 supporting the Government of Haiti in its immediate and long-term migration related programmes. IOM remains committed to its partners to stay and continue delivering humanitarian assistance to support vulnerable communities.

For more information, please contact Antoine Lemonnier at IOM Haiti, +509 39 90 6920,