Saturday, February 21, 2009

Haitians Facing Deportation Look to Obama for Help

Now Haitian advocates are wondering if the Obama era will bring in fair immigration reform or just more of the same.

by Desiree Evans, Facing South
February 20, 2009

The United States is set to deport more than 30,000 Haitians to their impoverished homeland, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials announced this week. A protest in response to the decision has been planned for Saturday, Feb. 21 in Broward County, Florida. Haitian activists and immigrants are calling for a halt to the arrests and a suspension of the deportations.

Deportation orders have been processed for 30,299 Haitians and they are starting to be implemented. Hundreds of Haitians have been put in camps awaiting the return home, while others have been put under a form of house arrest and are being monitored with electronic ankle bracelets, the AFP reported.

As the poorest nation in the western hemisphere, Haiti's troubles significantly increased with the passage of four deadly back-to-back storms last fall -- Fay, Gustav, Hanna and Ike -- that killed more than 800 persons and worsened the nation's food crisis. [...]

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