Newspapers cut staff and are unable to print in Haiti

The two Haitian dailies, Le Nouvelliste and Le Matin, are still coping with the devastating effects of the January earthquake. Though these outlets continue to disseminate news via the Internet, it will take them some time to resume publishing in print.

According to estimates made this week, Le Nouvelliste, the oldest daily in Haiti, will probably resume publication and distribution in six months. The paper’s chief editor, Pierre Manigat, said that the paper’s building was slightly damaged but its printing equipment needs to be replaced.

For the daily Le Matin, the outlook remains bleak. The newspaper’s management team has decided to switch its publication and circulation frequency. Thus, the daily will be published every other week, instead of daily. According to editor Jacques Desrosiers, who is also secretary general of the Association of Haitian Journalists, Le Matin’s state of affairs is indicative of the desolate overall situation for Haitian print media.

In the face of economic and financial difficulties, the heads of the two Haitian dailies, Max Chauvet at Le Nouvelliste and Reginald Boulos at Le Matin, have already announced layoffs. Some reporters with these outlets are already out of work. Desrosiers said that the salaries of remaining journalists have been cut by 60 percent. For his part, Manigat declared that the situation for journalists is so disastrous that any more layoffs would be inhumane.

Le Nouvelliste is the oldest print newspaper in Haiti. It was founded in 1898 in Port-au-Prince, the Haitian capital. The paper is now part of a media group including Radio Visa FM and Magic 9. It is the only newspaper that is printed in Haiti. Le Matin is printed in the Dominican Republic, while the two Haitian weeklies, Haiti Progrès and Haïti en Marche, and are published in New York and Miami, respectively.

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