Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Political Science

Second Department

Latin American and Caribbean Studies

First Advisor

Lori Marso

Second Advisor

Teresa Meade




persons, law, rights, people


This thesis explores whether stateless persons are more vulnerable to human trafficking and why. My primary example will be the 2013 Dominican Republic Supreme Court ruling, which rendered Haitian-Dominicans stateless. To understand current Dominican Republic-Haiti relations, this thesis addresses contentious historical accounts of these countries’ relations, particularly from the 1960’s to 2015. This case study will focus on the vulnerable relationship of citizens to a state, specifically the vulnerability of defacto statelessness versus dejure statelessness. I argue that dejure statelessness is a particularly severe condition that contributes to human trafficking. This thesis draws upon both primary and secondary sources including, published reports, journals, news film footage, and documentaries. Ethnographic research and interviews focusing on Dominican-Haitian relations will also be discussed in the later chapters. The qualitative and quantitative data collected throughout the thesis focuses on the way internal factors, such as human insecurity, discrimination and lack of dealing with structural problems of statelessness and human trafficking places a stateless person at a higher risk of becoming a victim of trafficking.