Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Haitian Deportations Slide Under Obama’s Radar (Miami Herald)

By: Myriam Marquez Barack Obama becomes president, and Haitians with deportation orders are put on notice: You’re outta here! Louiness Petit-Frere, a 31-year-old baker with no family left in Haiti and whose mother and siblings have legal U.S. status — including a U.S. Marine brother who served two tours in Iraq — was put on a flight on Friday. Vialine Jean Paul, 34, married to a U.S. citizen and with a 7-year-old American-born daughter being treated for a chronic viral infection, was notified that she needs to buy her plane ticket back to Haiti this week, having lost her appeal for asylum in 2001. Her choice: Leave behind her little girl or take the sick child to a storm-ravaged country where polluted flood waters have left thousands at risk of malaria, hepatitis and cholera and 300,000 children facing malnutrition. Immigration […]

Commentary: Haitians snubbed again in bid for TPS

Miami Herald Editorial The Bush administration continued its policy of cruelty and bias to Haitians with the recent rejection of President Rene Preval’s request that undocumented Haitians be allowed to remain in the United States until their country recovers from last summer’s devastating storms. In a Dec. 19 letter to Preval, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff acknowledged that the four storms that drowned low-lying parts of Haiti in mud and misery had been “severe.” He reminded Preval of the tons of humanitarian relief supplies the United States has sent, including “food, water, bed linens, medical supplies, hygienic items and clothing” to help the country get back on its feet. In the end, though, the rules for granting Haitians Temporary Protected Status are just too narrow, and Haitians don’t qualify, Chertoff said. The rules were not so narrow in 1998 when […]

Haiti Policy Statement for the Obama Team

Haiti Policy Statement for the Obama TeamEXECUTIVE SUMMARY: A New US-Haiti Partnership is essential. Below is the Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network (HLLN)’s policy statement. It outlines what Haitian-Americans are working to change in collaboration with the new US Congress and President Obama so to implement a more effective foreign polity with Haiti that centers on promoting sustainable development, self-sufficiency, and a sovereign, prosperous and stable Haiti.INTRODUCTION The issue for development of the Southern Hemispheric nations are very similar. As in Africa, Haiti has been ravaged by neocolonialism and its attendant power grabs through the tools of endless debt to the former colonial powers, their plundering of Africa’s and Haiti’s resources, unfair trade that promotes famine and dependency. The U.S. Congress and new U.S. president should support the institutionalization of the rule of law, support human rights, workers rights, food sovereignty, […]

U.S. resumes deportation flights to Haiti

By Luis F. Perez | South Florida Sun-Sentinel Deportation flights to Haiti resumed last week after a more than two-month halt, enraging activists and South Florida congressional leaders. In September, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement stopped deporting immigrants to Haiti in the wake of four tropical storms that ravaged the country. Advocates argued that the battered country couldn’t absorb returning countrymen as it dealt with storm damage. “We fully expected to resume deportation flights when it was safe,” said Nicole Navas, an ICE spokeswoman. “And we made a determination that it was appropriate to resume deportation based on the conditions on the ground.” Advocates say things are getting worse, not better. Schools are collapsing. Children are malnourished. The country’s infrastructure is obliterated, they said “After dealing with this administration on Haitian issues for eight years, I’m forced to conclude that […]

Haiti says it can’t accept U.S. deportees

Haiti says it can’t accept U.S. deportees Storm damage has crippled island nation, leader says McClatchy-Tribune Oct. 4, 2008, 9:40PM MIAMI — Haitian President Rene Preval on Friday said his storm-ravaged country will no longer be able to accept U.S. deportees and — for the first time — publicly called on the Bush administration to allow undocumented Haitians living in the United States to remain until their homeland recovers. “Haiti will no longer be able to receive the deported individuals that the United States sends us on a regular basis,” Preval said at the closing address at the Americas Conference in Coral Gables, Fla. “This is the occasion for the United States administration to put in place for Haitians the benefit of TPS, the Temporary Protected Status, that has already been granted to other countries in the region such as […]

Change That Haiti Can Believe In, Part II: Haitian Diaspora Considers Immigration Policy in Storms’ Wake

From the Haiti Justice blog The Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (IJDH) and Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) are collaborating on a series of articles on Haitian-Americans’ priorities for a United States policy towards Haiti under a new administration. The series’ first article, on immigration, is below. SIPA’s Caroline Stauffer is conducting the interviews and writing the articles. The opinions in the articles are those of the interviewees, not necessarily of IJDH or SIPA. To join the discussion, post a comment!By Caroline Stauffer As a humanitarian gesture, the U.S. government should stop deporting Haitians to the country devastated by a series of hurricanes in August and September, activists told the IJDH. Observing the destruction on the ground, Jean-Yvon Kernizan said the U.S. government should protect Haitians living in the United States, even if […]

Contact IJDH

Institute for Justice & Democracy In Haiti
15 Newbury St
Boston, MA

Telephone: (617) 652-0876
General Inquiries:
Media Inquiries: