After The Earthquake: Sexual Assault In HaitiIrin Carmon6/24/10 10:00amFiled to: DisastersRape haitiGettypicEarthquakeHaitiSexual assault preventionSexual assault prosecution53EditPromoteShare to KinjaToggle Conversation toolsGo to permalinkThe chilling story of one woman's sexual assault in post-disaster Haiti is on the front page of The New York Times today. Unfortunately, the story's subject isn't alone.AdvertisementTwenty-two year-old Rose was abducted, raped seven or eight times, and kept under rubble in a ruined house. She was released after her family raised $2000 for her ransom. Deborah Sontag writes,So many cases of rape go unrecorded here that statistics tell only a piece of the story. But existing numbers, from the police or women's groups, indicate that violence against women has escalated in the months after the Jan. 12 earthquake.Thousands of escaped prisoners in a devastated society, tent cities and camps that are poorly lit and unsecured, generalized despair—all are seen as factors in this. According to the story, case workers are counseling triple the usual number of victims.As we noted shortly after the earthquake hit, gender-focused humanitarian groups urged aid workers to pay particular attention to the vulnerability of women in disaster zones. And in March, Amnesty International urged its members to email President René García Préval to ask for increased police presence in camps to protect women, improve sanitation and lighting there, increase access to counseling and healthcare, and ensure that authorities accord with the response processes outlined in the National Plan to Fight Violence Against Women.