|New UN report pushes to stop deportations to Haiti|
|Friday, 15 June 2012 10:29|
A new report recently released by the UN Human Rights Council has again urged international government authorities to stop the continued deportation of Haitian migrants. The U.S., the Dominican Republic, The Bahamas and Jamaica were singled out in the report for their resumed deportations to Haiti.
In the report, U.N. independent expert on Haiti Michel Forst argued that the renewed deportation "raises concern about both the human rights and dignity of those returned as well as the burden that such returns place on the Haitian state to support additional persons, many of whom have little connection (cultural, linguistic, family ties) to Haiti."
The report criticized U.S. authorities in particular for deporting Haitians despite a longstanding legal status, extensive family ties in the U.S., or severe health conditions. The U.S. resumed deportations to Haiti on April 1 this year, assuring that "the severity, number of convictions, and dates since convictions" would be weighed against human rights issues. Since April, the U.S. deports approximately 40-50 persons to Haiti each month.
In his report however, Forst suggested that "while the United States has a written policy that takes humanitarian factors into account, it appears that this policy is not being fully implemented."
Forst cited one instance when U.S. authorities deported one man with a serious head wound, which became infected because he could not access medical care in Haiti. Another man was also deported, forcibly separating him from his U.S citizen wife and four children.
He also quoted concerns from immigration advocates who argue that "discrimination against Haitian migrants," stemmed from "too much discretion to immigration officials, and preferential treatment for other nationality groups."
The report did commend the U.S. for being the only UN member country that employed a reintegration program, but further argued that the program failed to provide "sufficient services.