This very detailed article describes the recent court ruling that strips Dominican-born Haitians’ citizenship, in light of the Dominican Republic’s history of anti-Haitian sentiment. It includes petitions, videos, and even a poem. Part of the article is pasted below. Click here for the full version.
If you are black, get out: The crisis of statelessness in the Dominican Republic
By Denise Oliver Velez, Daily Kos
October 20, 2013
Policiia Ovilsen (top, L), a Haitian-born immigrant to the Dominican Republic in 1940, poses outside her home with her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, in Batey La Higuera, in the eastern Seibo province, October 7, 2013
The decision by the high court in the Dominican Republic to declare anywhere from 250,000 to 400,000 Dominicans who may have Haitian ancestry “not citizens” with a start date of birth of 1929 is simply appalling.
For four generations Banesa Blemi’s family, descendants of Haitian immigrants, put down roots as low-wage sugar cane cutters in their adopted homeland, and came to consider themselves Dominicans.Then, last month the country’s Constitutional Court issued a decision effectively denationalizing Blemi and her family, along with an estimated 250,000 fellow immigrants born after 1929.
“I have no country. What will become of me?” said Blemi, 27, standing with relatives outside the family’s wooden shack near La Romana, the heart of the Dominican Republic’s sugar cane industry and one of the Caribbean’s top tourist resorts.
“We are Dominicans – we have never been to Haiti. We were born and raised here. We don’t even speak Creole,” she said, referring to Haiti’s native tongue.
Many headlines of stories dealing with this travesty, simply call these people “Haitians” and few point to what is obvious—the role of racial markers and skin color.
Follow me below the fold for a closer look.
Click HERE for the rest of the article.