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Tell Secretary Mayorkas to stop punishing Haitians for seeking asylum!

Claudia Tristan's picture

The images are shocking and the actions are horrifying -- U.S. Border Patrol agents on horseback brandishing whips or lariats against Haitian migrants seeking safety. And even if those actions turn out to be isolated incidents not sanctioned by our government, our official immigration policy toward Haiti is just as callous. Just one month after a catastrophic 7.2 magnitude earthquake exacerbated the economic, political, and human rights crises in Haiti, ICE is deporting Haitian immigrants to Haiti, without even giving them the opportunity to apply for asylum, which is their legal right under U.S. and international law. 

Sign on! Tell Secretary Mayorkas, ICE, and CBP (border patrol) to end the cruelty -- stop deportation flights to Haiti and stop punishing Haitians for seeking safety. *When you click, you’ll automatically sign on if we already have your information.

What’s happening? In July, the Haitian president, Jovenel Moïse, was assassinated in his home. [1] This left a country caught in political unrest even more unstable. Shortly after, in August, a devastating 7.2 magnitude earthquake hit the Caribbean nation killing more than 2,200 and injuring 12,000 more. [2] As if the political and earthquake disasters weren’t enough, Haiti was also hit by a destructive tropical storm. 

It is no surprise then that so many Haitians have had to flee their country out of desperation and have made their way to our border to seek asylum. Families are trying to request asylum expecting a fair and orderly process from the Biden administration and instead they’re being met by U.S. Border Patrol agents on horseback cracking whips or lariats [3] and put on planes to Haiti, a country mired in economic and political chaos.

Tell Secretary Mayorkas, ICE, and CBP to stop deportation flights to Haiti and stop punishing Haitians for seeking safety. *When you click, you’ll automatically sign on if we already have your information.

It is not illegal for Haitian—or any—immigrants to arrive at our border and ask for asylum. That is their legal right and part of the history of how the U.S. became so diverse and economically powerful. However, the Trump administration, using COVID-19 as a pretext, put in place an immigrant scapegoating policy, called Title 42, that allows for quick deportations of migrants, [4] including children under the age of three, using the pandemic as an excuse. This is despite there being simple and reasonable measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 like testing and quarantine. Immigrants are not even being offered the chance to apply for asylum. Now, the Biden administration is continuing this cruel Trump era policy to deport Haitians and other asylum seekers before they have a chance for a fair legal process. [5] 

[1] BBC News: Haiti president’s assassination: What we know so far 

[2] USA Today: Haiti earthquake death toll rises to 2,200, more than 300 people still missing

[3] Reuters: White House: apparent use of whips on Haitian migrants not acceptable 

[4] American Immigration Council: A guide to Title 42 expulsions at the border 

[5] NBC News: Biden admin to step up deportation of Haitians to address migrant surge, documents say


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