NJ Immigrant Rights Groups Join Nationwide Wave of Outrage at Biden Administration’s Abuse of Haitian Refugees at the U.S.-Mexico Border
(NEW JERSEY, SEPTEMBER 24, 2021) New Jersey immigrant rights organizations – National Domestic Workers Alliance, Wind of the Spirit Immigrant Resource Center, Make the Road New Jersey, Laundry Workers Center, New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice, and American Friends Service Committee – join a rising chorus of humanitarian organizations and public officials to call on President Biden to stop deportations and abuses of Haitian migrants on the border, in response to images of agents on horseback charging and whipping Haitian migrants.
“The abuse of Haitian migrants in Texas did not start this week, and is not limited to the horrifying photos we’ve all seen,” said Olga Armas of Make the Road New Jersey. “Since February, President Biden has been flying plane-fulls of Haitian refugees back to a country whose hazardous conditions moved his own Administration to declare Temporary Protected Status for Haitians already living in the U.S., and whose political turmoil stems in large part from the latest of many authoritarian leaders the U.S. has supported throughout Haiti’s history.”
The organizations called for an immediate moratorium on expulsion flights to Haiti; the end of the discredited “Title 42” rule that authorizes the expulsions on the premise of COVID protection and has been declared invalid by a court ruling that the Biden DOJ is fighting; and a refocus to refugee assistance, from this militarized response to a humanitarian crisis. Members pointed out that this is a call that has been made universally by immigrant- and human-rights groups including United We Dream, UndocuBlack Network, ACLU, NAACP, and Southern Poverty Law Center, while the U.S. special envoy to Haiti has quit in protest, and the Chairs of both the House Foreign Affairs and Homeland Security Committees have demanded the deportations stop and the Biden Administration provide detailed information on its rationales by October 1.
“This crisis clearly demonstrates the necessity of changing our immigration policies,” said Gloria Guerrero of Laundry Workers Center. “Continuing the previous President’s hostile approach to what should be a human-services mission is damaging America’s soul and its global standing. That’s the true emergency, and the true failure of leadership is the current President declining to reign in a rogue Border Patrol culture that’s ultimately under his command, and should be under Congress’ scrutiny.”
“It’s time for the Biden Administration to listen to civil society in Haiti and to the service groups right here, whose advice would bring about the more humane, lawful, safe, and fair immigration system he campaigned (and won) on,” said Helen Zamora-Bustos of Wind Of The Spirit Immigrant Resource Center. “We rejected the mass deportations and ignoring of U.S. law and treaty obligations under Trump, and as long as they remain, our opposition hasn’t changed just because the President has.”
Organizations joining in this demand for a just and humane immigration policy include: National Domestic Workers Alliance, Wind of the Spirit Immigrant Resource Center, Make the Road New Jersey, Laundry Workers Center, New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice, and American Friends Service Committee.
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