End of special immigration protections diminishes hopes of Haitians looking to cross into U.S. from Mexico
- Thousands of Haitians have become trapped in Mexico as an ongoing migration crisis has been exacerbated by the recent destruction wrought by Hurricane Matthew in their home country.
- The U.S. recently ended special protections for Haitian migrants in the country in place since the 2010 earthquake that killed more than 200,000, though activists have begun pressuring the government to renew them in light of the most recent natural disaster.
- Monitors estimate as many as 40,000—many coming from an economically distraught Brazil—may be en route throughout the Americas as they pay upwards of thousands of dollars to pass through the most legally treacherous parts.
“Far from Hurricane Matthew, a Haitian crisis flares in Tijuana” (Reuters)
“Haitians, After Perilous Journey, Find Door to U.S. Abruptly Shut” (The New York Times)
“Haitians throng at U.S.-Mexico border despite deportation policy” (AP via CBS News)
(Image Credit: Adam Ferguson/The New York Times)
Haitian migrants in Costa Rica seeking passage to U.S. pose as West African to avoid deportation
- The ongoing migration bottleneck in Costa Rica continues to pile up, with 100 to 150 new arrivals each day adding to the 2,500 already stranded in the overwhelmed country.
- The majority of undocumented migrants are Haitian, many coming from Brazil with some posing as West African in an attempt to avoid deportation, deprioritized for those from distant countries because of the high cost.
- Haitians point to ongoing economic destitution in their home country, poor prospects in host countries like Brazil and Ecuador, and what they perceive as a double standard of preferential treatment for certain migrants as motivation for migrating and the tactical deception.
“IOM Reports Growing Number of Irregular Migrants Stranded in Costa Rica” (International Organization for Migration, via ReliefWeb)
“95% de los migrantes irregulares son haitianos ‘disfrazados’ de africanos” (La Nación, in Spanish)
“Flood of ‘Muhammad Alis’ Highlights New Migration Toward U.S.” (Bloomberg)
(Image Credit: José Cordero/La Nación)
In Search of Home
After the 2010 earthquake that devastated much of their country’s infrastructure, thousands of Haitians immigrated to the U.S. in search of a place to rebuild their lives. However, the traumatic psychological and material effects of the catastrophe made integration into their new homes difficult. PRI profiles efforts in Boston, home to one of the biggest Haitian-American communities in the U.S., to provide a space of transition for Haitian boys in search of familiarity.
“A ‘home’ away from home is helping young Haitians in the US cope with trauma of 2010 earthquake” (Public Radio International)
(Image Credit: Rupa Shenoy/WGBH, via PRI)
As registration of Haitians in the Dominican Republic falls short of population numbers, the country looks to move forward with controversial deportations
- A little under half of the more than 500,000 migrant workers in the Dominican Republic have begun the documentation process with the Wednesday deadline looming, leaving the Haitian community, which comprises 90% of migrant workers, vulnerable to deportation.
- The situation comes as a result of the strict legal measures restricting citizenship and immigration that began with the stripping of the citizenship of Dominicans born to Haitian immigrants after 1929.
- Immigrants who have submitted themselves for registration will have 45 more days to complete the process, while the rest will be subject to deportations that the law’s opposers say can only result from community targeting and racial profiling.
“The signals are clear. …The Dominican government is setting up logistics, placing vehicles and personnel to start the process of repatriation.”
More on this story at The New York Times.
(Image Credit: Tatiana Fernandez/Associated Press, via The New York Times)