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President Biden Delivered on His Promise to Ensure Protection for Haitians in the United State; Title 42 Expulsions Must Also End to Protect Black and Brown Migrants

WASHINGTON, D. C. — The National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) applauds Black immigrant leaders, whose advocacy was instrumental in the Biden administration decision to redesignate Haiti for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). TPS offers relief for Haitian nationals currently in the U.S. from the fear of imminent deportations back to Haiti, where life-threatening violence and instability compound the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2010 earthquake.

NIJC’s senior policy analyst Azadeh Erfani stated in response: 

“We commend the Biden administration’s decision to honor its promise to redesignate TPS for Haiti. Haitian migrants and asylum seekers have borne the brunt of some of the worst U.S. policies. 

“There is no doubt that the decision to protect 100,000+ Haitians was the product of years of tireless advocacy from Black immigrants and Black-led immigrant rights organizations. Led by the Haitian Bridge Alliance, NIJC joined over 160 groups to remind the prior administration of the United States’ shameful history of punishing Haiti for seeking independence from colonialism and slavery and subsequent interference with the nation’s attempts to build democracy. By the 1980s and 1990s, tens of thousands of Haitian asylum seekers arrived by boat to seek refuge in the United States, fleeing a brutal dictatorship. Rather than offer them protection and process them under U.S. and international asylum laws, the U.S. government intercepted them at sea, jailed them indefinitely in Guantanamo Bay, and erected the mass immigration detention system that continues to plague our communities today.

“While we celebrate this overdue announcement, we urge the Biden administration to comprehensively review the immigration system for its disparate impact on Black, Brown, and indigenous migrants and asylum seekers. We especially call on the Biden administration to end the Trump-era policy of Title 42 expulsions, which has resulted in over half a million expulsions of Haitian, African, and Latin American asylum seekers back to life-threatening harm in violation of domestic and international law.”