Less that one third of the City of Gonaives, the fourth largest city of 300,000, has been dug out of the mud.
The government of Haiti is now refusing to co-operate with the government of the United States and will not issue travel documents for these 30,000 Haitians, saying that to receive them will only cause more instability as the country has no resources to accommodate them. Prisons are already full, court systems are clogged. Many of these deportees have no family ties in Haiti and do not even speak Kreyol.
While I am strong supporter of solid and strong national immigration policies and believe that the United States has every right to deport illegal immigrants, I would
ask President Obama that he stay this deportation order until he himself has had an opportunity to visit Haiti in person.
The WHITE HOUSE PHONE NUMBER IS 202 456 1414.
Which I hope he will do as soon as he returns from Canada. Since Haiti is the second oldest independent nation in the Western Hemisphere, only 15 younger than the United States, and now our most fragile neighbor, she deserves our deepest attention.
I urge f/Friends to join me in this effort and to circulate this posting widely.
Protest looms as US is set to deport 30,000 Haitians
MIAMI (AFP) — Activists called a protest for Saturday as the United States moved closer to carrying out deportation orders for more than 30,000 Haitians.
An Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman said Tuesday that deportation orders have been processed for 30,299 Haitians and hundreds have been put in detention centers or on electronic monitoring at home in preparation for deportation.
"Last week we had nationally 30,299 Haitians on final order of removal, meaning that an Immigration judge ordered them to be deported from the United States," said spokeswoman Nicole Navas.
Meanwhile 598 Haitians are detained and 243 (have) electronic monitoring, Navas explained.
US authorities complain that deportations have been dragged out because the Haitian government has failed to provide proper documentation for the trips while insisting it is not in any shape to handle a major return of refugees.
Haiti's consul general in Miami Ralph Latortue did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
"People are terrified, very afraid, especially those who have children and do not want to go back to Haiti," said Gepsie Metellus, director of "Sant La", a social aid network in Miami's Little Haiti district.
Activists and immigrants alike have called a protest rally for Saturday at Broward Transitional Center, in Broward county just north of Miami, said activist Marleine Bastien.
They are demanding an end to arrests and an end to deportations of Haitians, the right to work and the release of the hundreds of Haitians held in detention centers across the country.
Immigration is a sensitive issue in the Miami area, home to at least 800,000 Cuban-Americans. Haitians and immigrants from other Latin American countries deeply resent that when Cubans arrive in Miami they are immediately given the right to stay and work, a blanket red-carpet welcome given to citizens of no other country.