[Blackstudies-l] NYT Editorial: Don’t Send 50,000 Back to Fragile Haiti
lima at geneseo.edu
Mon May 1 06:33:44 EDT 2017
lisaparavisini posted: " An editorial from The New York Times. Tens of
thousands of Haitians living in the United States are facing an ominous
deadline. The temporary protected status that has allowed them to live and
work here legally since 2010 — the year an earthquake deva"
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<http://repeatingislands.com/author/lisaparavisini/> NYT Editorial: Don’t
Send 50,000 Back to Fragile Haiti
An editorial from *The New York Times*.
Tens of thousands of Haitians living in the United States are facing an
ominous deadline. The temporary protected status that has allowed them to
live and work here legally since 2010
— the year an earthquake devastated their country and left them unable to
return safely home — is set to expire on July 22. Unless the homeland
security secretary, John Kelly, decides to renew it, about 50,000 Haitians
will lose their welcome here and be vulnerable to deportation.
A reasonable person might say: The United States couldn’t do that. Haiti
has made only a fitful recovery from the quake, which all but destroyed the
national government and left hundreds of thousands homeless, and ensuing
disasters have deepened the country’s misery. Hurricane Matthew in October
2016 ravaged Haiti’s southwest peninsula, killing more than a thousand
people and laying waste to villages and farmland. A cholera epidemic
that erupted after the earthquake has not been subdued.
These acute crises, laid atop chronic poverty and political turmoil, make
Haiti a fragile place. The sudden return of tens of thousands of
expatriates would be yet another damaging blow. Better those Haitians
remain in the United States, where they can be safe and work and send money
home, and not further burden their traumatized homeland.
That is a reasonable conclusion. But not everyone in the Trump
administration recognizes it. The acting head of Citizenship and
Immigration Services, James McCament, wrote
to Mr. Kelly this month recommending that temporary protected status be
ended next January.
“Although Hurricane Matthew recently caused a deterioration of conditions
in Haiti’s southwest peninsula,” he wrote, “over all, circumstances in the
country have continued on an upward trajectory since the 2010 earthquake.”
Give that man a prize for bureaucratic understatement: “Deterioration of
conditions” is a brutally antiseptic way to describe a Category 4 hurricane
that left so much death, sickness and hunger in its wake. In fairness, Mr.
McCament’s memo does acknowledge many of the other afflictions that would
argue for temporary protected status, including homelessness, gender-based
violence, food insecurity, deep deficiencies in sanitation and health care,
and a weak government.
And yet it reached the wrong conclusion. Only in December, in President
Barack Obama’s administration, the State Department examined the same
circumstances and recommended that the Haitians be allowed to remain.
Temporary protected status
<https://www.uscis.gov/humanitarian/temporary-protected-status> is where
United States law joins practicality and humanitarian compassion. Mr. Kelly
may make his decision by May 23, 60 days before the expiration date. Before
he decides to send them back — and, given the Trump administration’s
coldblooded approach to destitute migrants the world over, who knows what
he will do? — we hope he considers what advantage there could possibly be
in sowing greater instability in Haiti, deepening its poverty and
subjecting so many people to such pointless cruelty. Rather than make a
desperate situation intolerably worse, he should extend America’s welcome
to the Haitians once again.
*lisaparavisini <http://repeatingislands.com/author/lisaparavisini/>* |
April 30, 2017 at 11:21 pm | Categories: News
<http://repeatingislands.com/category/news/> | URL: http://wp.me/psnTa-v6v
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