Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Action Alert: Join the Haiti Deportations Response Network

February 21, 2017 Dear Friend, Hundreds of detained Haitian asylum-seekers and migrants, including women and children, are being deported weekly from detention centers across the United States in violation of their rights. They need your help urgently. The Department of Homeland Security is currently holding about 4,000 detainees in facilities throughout the US. More than 2500 Haitian detainees have already been deported, and around 270 more are being deported each week. Lawyers, community activists and detainees’ relatives have reported a range of prejudicial procedural problems in their asylum processing, including no lawyers, weak or non-existent interpretation and the use of apparently fabricated statements. Most of the detainees are held in remote facilities far from family, community and legal support; and some would have viable asylum claims if they had effective representation. Find more details here. The Institute for Justice & […]

Thousands of detained Haitians unsure of future in the U.S. or Haiti

Resumed deportations of Haitians pose immeasurable challenges for individuals who made the perilous journey to seek refuge in the United States. Between October 2016 and mid-January 2017, the U.S. deported 1,513 Haitians and thousands more remain in detention awaiting an uncertain future. Part of the article is shown below. Click HERE for the original article. Haitians’ dreams dashed after costly US voyage Gulf Times February 12, 2017 John Stevens Val borrowed 3,000 from friends and family and trekked through 10 countries to make his way to the United States, where he hoped life would be better than in Haiti, his impoverished homeland. But in the end he landed in a US immigration detention centre and was deported back to Haiti, deep in debt and struggling to integrate, like so many other Haitians. Val, 28, left home after a devastating 2010 earthquake that wrecked the […]

Time is Running Out for Obama Administration to Treat Haitians Fairly

Even before Hurricane Matthew, Haiti was in no state to accept refugees deported from the United States. After the Hurricane, with the south all but destroyed, spikes in cholera and a precarious political situation, it makes even less sense to deport Haitians but the Department of Homeland Security has announced that it will begin again. Elected officials in Florida, as well as advocates, urge the Obama administration not only to stop these deportations; but also to extend Temporary Status for Haitians and expand the Haitian Family Reunification Program. The latter has allowed only 1,952 Haitians who are approved for visas into the US, due to its arbitrary restrictions. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. Haitian-American Elected Officials Ask President Obama to Expand Family Reunification South Florida Caribbean News December 16, 2016 MIAMI – City […]

Congresswoman Clarke: Deportations will “exacerbate the difficulties of rebuilding Haiti”

Congresswoman Clarke is speaking out against the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)’s decision to resume non-criminal deportations to Haiti. On September 22, DHS announced that it would resume deporting Haitians who were not charged with a crime. After Hurricane Matthew hit, DHS Secretary Johnson was forced to pause the deportations because of the devastation wrought by the storm. The debris isn’t yet cleared and the cholera epidemic has worsened but DHS has decided to resume these deportations again, planning to send two plane-loads of people to Haiti each week. Congresswoman Clarke noted that “In this period of turmoil, the forced removal of Haitian nationals will only exacerbate the difficulties of rebuilding Haiti and deny families access to remittances from relatives in the United States.” Click HERE for the original article. US starts sending people back to Haiti again after pausing […]

While attention is elsewhere, US government resumes deportations to Haiti

While the U.S. government transitions between administrations, the Department of Homeland Security continues to deport people of Haitian heritage. Steve Forester of IJDH said, “It’s completely outrageous given the devastation Hurricane Matthew caused and the inability of Haiti to receive deportees…The only thing that has changed in Haiti is that the vast devastation affecting two million people in Haiti is no longer in the headlines; that’s the only thing that has changed since they suspended deportations.” Steve Forester is an activist in Miami. Activists in San Diego also condemn the deportations. Pierre Esperance, executive director of the National Network Defense of Human Rights (RNDDH). Esperance said, “These are not criminal deportees but people who went to Brazil and transited through Mexico to San Diego, California.” Below is a portion of the Miami Herald article. Click HERE for the full article. U.S. government […]

12 US Senators Urge Temporary Protected Status for Haitians in Wake of Hurricane Matthew

Senators Menendez, Nelson, Leahy, Durbin, Warren, Markey, Booker, Feinstein, Wyden, Franken, Brown, and Reed have joined in the calls for the Obama administration to re-designate Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haitians. TPS was last granted to Haitians after the 2010 earthquake. After Hurricane Matthew, the Senators “believe the reports of widespread damage and destruction in Haiti make TPS designation appropriate.” They also request clarification of the Department of Homeland Security’s plan to pause non-criminal deportations to Haiti, given that the situation there was poor even before Hurricane Matthew. Part of the post is below. Click HERE for the full text. Sens. Menendez and Nelson Lead TPS Request for Haitians in Wake of Hurricane Matthew Request clarification of new deportation policy of Haitians Senator Bob Menendez Thursday, October 13, 2016 WASHINGTON, DC – Following the devastation and humanitarian disaster suffered by […]

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Institute for Justice & Democracy In Haiti
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Telephone: (617) 652-0876
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