Monday, October 13, 2008

Haiti Watch

Following Haiti's devastation by four back to back storms last month, editorials in the Miami Herald and the New York Times (see here and here) have joined Haiti's president René Preval and members of congress in calling for the Bush administration to grant temporary protected status (TPS) to undocumented Haitian immigrants currently residing in the United States.

After the storms, the Bush administration temporarily suspended deportations but has not yet taken the next step of granting TPS. In the past, the U.S. has routinely granted (and the Bush administration has regularly renewed) TPS to Hondurans, Salavorans, and Hondurans when their countries faced similar devastating catastrophies yet, as the Miami Herald puts it, Haitians can't seem to "catch a break." Haiti's poverty, which was already the worst on this side of the globe prior to the storm, has--practically overnight--become infinitely worse. The last thing Haiti needs right now is, as the New York Times argues, "a forced influx of homeless, jobless deportees."

If you are a U.S. citizen, consider contacting President Bush and your congressional representatives and encourage them to support TPS for Haitian nationals. If you are not a U.S. citizen, you can also encourage support for this measure by contacting the U.S. ambassador in your country of residence.

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