Dominican Republic and Haiti share the island of Hispaniola. For more than 90 years, Haitians have crossed over to Dominican Republic in search of work or better life conditions.
Until the 1980s, most of the migrant Haitian population went towards the ‘bateys,’ villages attached to sugar cane plantations, where men were employed as cane cutters, earning miserable wages and living in extreme conditions inside barrack huts.
Despite the fall of the sugar industry this migration increased, due to the growth of the Dominican economy and the prolonged political and economic crisis in Haiti.
Although part of this population has migrated to other parts of the country, many continue living in the ‘bateys.’