A report released this month by human-rights groups says that people who are deported to Haiti face tough conditions after they leave the U.S.
Activists, authors and report contributors will speak about the findings Thursday morning at the Little Haiti Cultural Center. The report recommends that the U.S. stop deporting Haitians with criminal records until conditions improve in their country.
After the Haiti earthquake in 2010, the U.S. granted eligible Haitians Temporary Protected Status, allowing them to stay in the country temporarily. But those with two misdemeanors or one felony are forced to leave. About 1,500 people have been deported to Haiti in the past five years, according to the report.
The conference will feature Haitian-American author Edwidge Danticat, known for her award-winning novel, Brother, I’m Dying. She also wrote the foreword to the report in which she discusses the problems people face when they are deported, including violence, harassment and extortion by the police.
“The United States continues to deport people in spite of the fact that Haiti has been suffering from a massive post-earthquake humanitarian crisis in which 1.5 million people became homeless and nearly a million were affected by a cholera epidemic introduced to the country by the United Nations troops,” Danticat said in the foreword.
The nearly 68-page report was released by the Human Rights and Immigration clinics at the University of Miami School of Law and the International Human Rights Clinic at the University of Chicago School of Law. It includes interviews with more than 100 deportees about the treatment they experience after deportation.
“We hope this report moves the U.S. government to stop deportations to Haiti,” said Marleine Bastien, executive director of the Haitian Women of Miami, in a news release. “Post-earthquake Haiti is unable to safely receive deportees.”