tags: , , , Press Releases

Recent Haiti Developments and Lack of Protections for Black Migrants Sparks Call to Action From Immigrant Advocates

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You can listen to a recording of the call here

Washington, DC –  Leading immigrant advocates joined a press call this afternoon to call on lawmakers and the Biden administration to take action and provide security for Haitians, Liberians and other migrants seeking safety or permanent residence. In light of recent developments – the assasination of Haiti’s President, the continuation of Title 42 policy barring Haitians and others from entering the U.S. at the southern border, and the ongoing Haitian deportation flights to a country experiencing a dangerous political crisis – speakers on the call called for action to stabilize Haiti, protect Haitians in and out of the country, and to respond to the unique challenges faced by Black immigrants. 

On Thursday, led by the Haitian Bridge Alliance and UndocuBlack Network, 134 organizations signed a letter to President Biden and the Secretaries of State and Homeland Security and the Directors of the NSA and DPC, urging specific actions to protect Haitian nationals in the U.S. or seeking asylum in the U.S.

Guerline Jozef,  Co-Founder and Executive Director, Haitian Bridge Alliance (aka The Bridge), said, “Given the current state of Haiti, we ask the Biden-Harris administration to immediately instruct CBP agents and officers to issue parole to all Haitians seeking protection at a U.S. border, and refrain from pursuing removal proceedings, or the detention or deportation of Haitian nationals. We demand that the U.S. immediately put an end to Title 42 and provide protection for all single persons, children and families seeking refuge. The systemic anti-Black discrimination that is embedded in the immigration system is prohibiting Haitians seeking protection from getting positive Credible Fear Interviews, placing them in expedited removal proceedings. In addition, we ask that TPS be expanded to cover Haitian Nationals living in the United States since the date that the Federal Register Notice was published. The Federal Register Notice should also have a presumption against firm resettlement. Building back better requires that the President commit to providing protection for extremely vulnerable communities, and that oftentimes includes Black immigrants. We stand against both internal and external violence that continue to plague Haiti.”

“The FANM believes that the assassination of former President Jovenel Moise represents a sad turn of events in Haiti. We express our deepest sympathies to the former President’s family,” Paul Christian Namphy, Lead Organizer, FANM (Family Action Network Movement) in Miami, said. “The recent death is a culmination of massacres ongoing in Haiti. Forces have killed over 60 people in the last month, among the dead were women activists. The tragic crisis allows Haiti to now do things right. We know that this has not been the case historically. We now need a diverse and representative governing body in Haiti and to pave the way for free, credible, and safe elections. Haitians living in the country are in the best place to make recommendations. It is unconscionable and unlawful for the U.S. to continue the deportations of Haitian migrants who have had to flee and deserve to be granted due process.”

Breanne J. Palmer, Esq., Interim Policy & Advocacy Director, UndocuBlack Network, said, “The Biden-Harris administration must prioritize Black immigrants in every respect–including Liberians on the pathway to citizenship via the Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness (LRIF) program. USCIS must not allow the first legalization bill to pass Congress in decades, specifically benefiting Black immigrants, to languish through administrative neglect. The Biden-Harris administration must prove its commitment to racial and immigrant justice by processing applications faster, removing discriminatory and unnecessary requirements, and restoring trust between the government and our communities.”