Thousands protest in Haiti as gasoline price doubles

By Vivian Sahner
October 3, 2022
Etant Dupain

Thousands have taken to the streets in Haiti over the last three weeks since the government announced the price of gasoline would more than double. Protesters blocked roads throughout the capital, Port-au-Prince. Schools and businesses closed as streets were blocked.

The actions followed demonstrations across Haiti Aug. 22, above, by thousands protesting the growing scarcity of gas and diesel, and demanding that Prime Minister Ariel Henry step down. “I need the gas to work,” 28-year-old moto-taxi driver Garry Larose said as he marched. “I have a family to feed, school to pay.”

Inflation in Haiti has surged to over 30%, the highest rate in a decade. The price of food has increased by 52%, with the cost of other basic goods such as rice more then quadrupling.

The capitalist class and its backers in Washington haven’t been able to create a stable government in Haiti. Large swaths of the country are under the control of criminal gangs. Unable to support their families, thousands have fled Haiti aboard rickety boats filled with hundreds. Dozens have died at sea in recent months.

The Joseph Biden administration deported more than 26,000 Haitians between September 2021 and June this year, more than half of them children or parents traveling with children. Overall, Biden has presided over the deportation of more than 1.1 million people.