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Archive for the ‘Haiti TPS’ Category

Haitians Impatient with Obama Over TPS

In Haiti TPS, Haitians, Obama, RALLY/PROTEST on October 29, 2009 at 8:10 pm

by Francesca Guerrier & Kim Ives

Some 50 Haitians and their supporters held a spirited demonstration in front of the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach on Monday, Oct. 26 to demand that President Obama immediately grant Temporary Protected Status or TPS to some 35,000 undocumented Haitians currently in the US.

Obama was at the hotel for a fundraiser for Democratic Florida congressmen Alcee Hastings and Kendrick Meek, who is running for senator.

The demonstration was organized by the Haitian American Grassroots Coalition, Institute of Justice and Democracy (IJDH), Florida Immigrant Coalition (FLIC) and Free Haiti Now, all groups which had been expecting Obama to reverse the Bush administration’s denial of TPS to Haitians last December.

“We are all frustrated that more than nine months after President Obama’s inauguration Haitians still don’t have TPS despite the incredibly broad editorial and political support for it, including from the three South Florida Republicans in the US House of Representatives,” said Steve Forester, an immigration lawyer and long-time TPS advocate who presently represents the IJDH in Florida. “And we are doubly surprised that we have not yet gotten a response to our request to at least give people the dignity of the right to work while the administration continues, month after month, to review the propriety of granting TPS, which to us and every objective observer is a no-brainer, based on the four hurricanes and storms that hit Haiti in a one-month period a year ago.”

TPS, which briefly can be granted by executive order to undocumented immigrants in the U.S. who are temporarily unable to return to their nation because of a natural disaster, armed conflict, or other extraordinary circumstances. Since it was established in 1990, TPS has been granted to immigrants from Nicaragua, El Salvador, Honduras, Burundi, Somalia, Montserrat, Sierra Leone, Sudan and Liberia.

Since January, many demonstrations demanding TPS for Haitians have been held in Florida and other states. Over 300 people from Florida and the Northeast traveled by bus to Washington, DC to demonstrate in front of the White House on Jun. 3, and many more turned out for a second demonstration there on Sep. 16.

On Sep. 18, Free Haiti Now, FLIC and Haitian Women in Miami (FANM) held a vigil at Virginia Key Beach on Key Biscayne to call for TPS and to pay respect to the many Haitian refugees who have died at sea. Performing at the protest were Miami artists DJ Khaled, Mecca aka Grimo, and Grindmode. Other celebrities also supported the action and the TPS call including M1 from Dead Prez, Black Dada, Ace Hood, NBA superstar Hudonis Haslem, and three artists from the group Poe Boy: Billy Blue, Brisco and Flo Rida.

“We need the administration to grant TPS or at least, while they are considering it, to grant work permits on a case by case basis to TPS-deserving non-criminal Haitians who desperately need work permits, drivers licenses and the ability to feed their families, pay electricity bills, and send remittances to Haiti which can support up to ten times that number, thereby increasing Haiti’s security and our own,” Forester said.

On Oct. 26, the demonstrators were restricted to a sidewalk across Collins Avenue from the Fontainebleau. The area was heavily guarded by U.S. Secret Service, Miami Beach police and private security guards. The police harassed demonstrators who sought to take pictures of the protest from the street.

Further down the sidewalk, a group of about 100 anti-immigrant “teabaggers” protested Obama’s presence in Miami with absurd signs like “Go back to Kenya” and “Go back to Indonesia” and “Obama = Comunism.” (sic)

Among those who came out to the TPS demonstration were a few Central American farmworkers from Homestead, about 25 Haitians from West Palm Beach, and FLIC staff members.

In March, former Haitian-American unionist Patrick Gaspard, now Obama’s Director for Political Affairs, traveled to Miami to soothe and reassure Haitian leaders that the administration would soon act on TPS. The reprieve he brokered has now expired.

“As far as we are concerned, regarding Haiti, the Obama administration is maintaining the same status quo as the Bush immigration policy,” Haitian-American Grassroots Coalition president Jean-Robert Lafortune told the Miami Herald.

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POE BOYS FLO RIDA AND BRISCO FOR TPS FOR HAITIANS

In ENTERTAINMENT, Haiti TPS, Haitians, RALLY/PROTEST on September 11, 2009 at 9:05 pm

Miami FL, FREE HAITI NOW met with Poe Boy’s Flo rida and Brisco Friday Sept 4th at the Hit Factory building to personally thank them on their support for the Tet Ansanm Vigil that will take place on September 18th at the Historic Virginia Key Beach Park as a national call to ask President Obama to grant Temporary Protected Status to qualifying undocumented Haitians.
Flo rida spoke about his belief in Equal Rights he said:” I grew up with Haitians around me, they are very hard working people, they believe in education and a lot of them come here to have an opportunity, the opportunity that most Americans take for granted, I believe in equal rights, everybody has the right to eat, to support our families and I definitely believe that the Haitians deserve their rights. The Haitian youth I want to thank for their support , as I said lots of my friends are Haitians, keep on fighting hard until you get your rights, because Yall just as important as Americans.
His label mate Brisco said he would ask President Obama: “ Aren’t Haitians Humans? Aren’t they people? I’m not Haitian, but I speak up for the Haitian youth and I believe they deserve a even bigger voice, people in Haiti have been suffering, the least this administration can do is to grant them TPS considering that the Cubans have their right to stay here, and everybody else too, I just think it’s not fair towards Haitians. I want to tell the Haitian people to stay positive and empowered and powers come in numbers, so as long as yall stick together yall should be fine, Mr Obama you are doing so much for us, all we are asking is for one thing: TPS to HAITIANS NOW!
The Organizing Agencies FANM, FLIC, and FREE HAITI NOW are very thankful to have the support by the Hip Hop Community provided by On Point Entertainment and Marketing.
Nobody should live in fear especially in a free country as the United States, living in fear of raids and not being able to take your sick child to the hospital because of your “illegal” status therefore can’t have a license is simply legally, morally and spiritually wrong.

Event Details and For More Information:
Event: Tet Ansanm TPS Solidarity Vigil
Date: Friday, September 18, 2009
Time: 3:00pm – 7:00pm
Location: Virginia Key Beach Park – 4020 Virginia Beach Drive, Miami, FL
Hosting Agencies: FANM, FLIC, FHN, OPEM
Type: Vigil/Rally
Phone: 3057787073
Email: Francesca@floridaimmigrant.org, dmagloire@fanm.org, Francesca@onpointworld.com

Background: Temporary Protected Status is for foreign nationals currently residing in the U.S. whose homeland conditions are recognized by the US government as being temporarily unsafe or overly dangerous to return to (e.g., war, earthquake, flood, drought, or other extraordinary and temporary conditions). TPS would afford undocumented Haitians SSN, work authorization, driver licenses and opportunity to attend school while they are in the US as Haiti recovers from four devastating hurricanes in 2008.

Hip-Hop Record Label, We the Best Music, Urges President Obama to Grant Temporary Protected Status for Haitians

In ENTERTAINMENT, Haiti TPS, RALLY/PROTEST on September 8, 2009 at 8:12 pm

Almost one year since four hurricanes killed approximately one thousand men, women, and children; destroyed 80 per cent of Haiti’s crops; and added over a million more to the homelessness rate in Haiti, ongoing requests for TPS for approximately 30,000 undocumented Haitians in the US continue to go unanswered. Members of the hip-hop community are voicing their frustrations about the treatment of Haitians by the Obama Administration.

DJ Khaled, founder of We The Best Music record label and Ace Hood, an artist on DJ Khaled’s label expressed their wish for TPS to be granted in an interview on September 2, 2009. Ace Hood asks “President Obama not to deport Haitians back but to allow them to stay, give them TPS and give them their freedom.” DJ Khaled added “This is a free country and the land of opportunity, and therefore [Haitians] deserve a chance.”

Ace Hood, whose hometown of Deer Field Beach is that site of Broward Detention Center, a detention center that unjustly incarcerates Haitians and other immigrants pending deportation, pleas for TPS so he can keep his Haitian friends around. He notes that if TPS is not granted it would affect him significantly. “A lot of people I surround myself with are Haitian, they are family,” he continues.

Like DJ Khaled and Ace Hood, other hip hop artists are pushing the Administration for TPS. In an event on September 18, 2009, hip-hop artists will raise their voices to call the youth to action toward President Obama. Poe Boy’s Flo rida, Billy Blue, Brisco, Sak Pase Record’s Mecca aka Grimo, Iconz Music’s Ballgreazy ,Maybach Music Group’s Triple C, 99 Jamz’s DJ Griot, Grindmode, and Des Loc from Piccalo will come together on Friday, September 18th, 2009 for the Tet Ansanm (Heads United) TPS Solidarity Vigil for Haitian refugees lost at sea. The Vigil sponsored by the Haitian Women of Miami (FANM), Florida Immigrant Coalition (FLIC), FREE HAITI NOW (FHN) and On Point Entertainment and Marketing (OPEM) will take place at the Historic Virginia Key Beach Park starting at 3pm on September 18th. The Vigil will also feature poets, motivational speakers and local politicians.

Event Details and For More Information:

Event: Tet Ansanm TPS Solidarity Vigil

Date: Friday, September 18, 2009

Time: 3:00pm – 7:00pm

Location: Virginia Key Beach Park – 4020 Virginia Beach Drive, Miami, FL

Hosting Agencies: FANM, FLIC, FHN, OPEM

Type: Vigil/Rally

Phone: 305778707

Email: Francesca@floridaimmigrant.org, dmagloire@fanm.org, Francesca@onpointworld.com

Background: Temporary Protected Status is for foreign nationals currently residing in the U.S. whose homeland conditions are recognized by the US government as being temporarily unsafe or overly dangerous to return to (e.g., war, earthquake, flood, drought, or other extraordinary and temporary conditions). TPS would afford undocumented Haitians SSN, work authorization, driver licenses and opportunity to attend school while they are in the US as Haiti recovers from four devastating hurricanes in 2008.

DJ KHALED-RICK ROSS ‘S CCC ARTIST-MECCA AKA GRIMO SAY : PRESIDENT OBAMA GRANT HAITIANS TPS

In Haiti TPS on September 5, 2009 at 6:20 am

Mecca aka Grimo Address President Obama for TPS for Haitians

DJ KHALED Comes in FULL Support of TPS for Haitians

Def Jam’s artist CCC’S Gunplay supports TPS for Haitians

NBA Star, Udonis Haslem speaks out in favor of TPS for Haitians

In ENTERTAINMENT, Haiti TPS, RALLY/PROTEST on September 5, 2009 at 5:45 am

ON THE SET OF RICK ROSS'S CCC VIDEO SHOOT

ON THE SET OF RICK ROSS'S CCC VIDEO SHOOT

In an interview on Wednesday, September 2, 2009, with FREE HAITI NOW, Udonis Haslem (#40), Forward-Center for the Miami Heat spoke about the widespread financial impact of Temporary Protected Status on the U.S. “I shout out TPS because whether we believe it or not, this would affect everybody,” Haslem comments. Haslam who states that Haitians are an integral part of Miami, believes that Haitians here alike everyone else in the US should have the opportunity to work and make an honest living.

Haslem is not alone in his sentiment about the importance of the Haitian community to the fabric of the American culture. Other young celebrities like Poe Boy’s Flo rida, Billy Blue, Brisco, Sak Pase Record’s Mecca aka Grimo, Iconz Music’s Ballgreazy ,Maybach Music Group’s Triple C, 99 Jamz’s DJ Griot, Grindmode, and Des Loc from Piccalo will come together on Friday, September 18th, 2009 for the Tet Ansanm (Heads United) TPS Solidarity Vigil for Haitian refugees lost at sea. They will raise their voices to call the youth to action toward President Obama to grant TPS to undocumented Haitians.

The Vigil sponsored by the Haitian Women of Miami (FANM), Florida Immigrant Coalition (FLIC), FREE HAITI NOW (FHN) and On Point Entertainment and Marketing (OPEM) will take place at the Historic Virginia Key Beach Park starting at 3pm on September 18th. The Vigil will also feature poets, motivational speakers and local politicians.

Event Details and For More Information:

Event: Tet Ansanm TPS Solidarity Vigil
Date: Friday, September 18, 2009
Time: 3:00pm – 7:00pm
Location: Virginia Key Beach Park – 4020 Virginia Beach Drive, Miami, FL
Hosting Agencies: FANM, FLIC, FHN, OPEM
Type: Vigil/Rally
Phone: 3057787073
Email: Francesca@floridaimmigrant.org, dmagloire@fanm.org, Francesca@onpointworld.com

Background: Temporary Protected Status is for foreign nationals currently residing in the U.S. whose homeland conditions are recognized by the US government as being temporarily unsafe or overly dangerous to return to (e.g., war, earthquake, flood, drought, or other extraordinary and temporary conditions). TPS would afford undocumented Haitians SSN, work authorization, driver licenses and opportunity to attend school while they are in the US as Haiti recovers from four devastating hurricanes in 2008.

-NO MORE DEATHS GRANTS US TPS-

In ENTERTAINMENT, Haiti TPS, RALLY/PROTEST on September 1, 2009 at 2:17 am

TPS NOW

Entrance is FREE Donations are Encouraged

APPEARANCES BY:
DJ GRIOT
BRISCO
BILLY BLUE
FLO RIDA
DES LOC FROM PICCALO
MECCA AKA GRIMO
GRINDMODE
STICHEZ
FLO

SUPPORTED BY:

ON POINT ENTERTAINMENT & MUSIC
ICONZ MUSIC
POE BOY
99 JAMZ
HOT 105

POETS:
MECCA AKA GRIMO
MICHAEL MARTINEZ
WILDA NUBIA PREVIL

Politicians and Community leaders will also be present!

PARENTS OF BABY LUANA RELEASED AFTER FANM MAKES PLEA TO DHS

In Haiti TPS, Haitians on August 28, 2009 at 2:50 am

“At last, the parents of baby Luana have been released from custody,” exclaims Marleine Bastien, Executive Director of FANM, Inc. Almost one month ago, Marleine Bastien addressed a letter to Secretary Napolitano of the Department of Homeland Security, requesting the release of Chandeline Leonard and Lucsene Augustin. This couple was detained by ICE after their boat capsized off Palm Beach County on or about May 13, 2009. Chandeline and Lucsene’s 8 month old baby girl, Luana Augustin, tragically drowned in the waters when the boat capsized.

In the late afternoon of Friday, August 21, 2009, Chandeline was finally released from the West Palm Beach County Jail. Her father, Seneque Leonard and cousin, Albert Noel were there to bring her home. Today, after 3 months of separation, Chandeline and Lucsene were reunited. Lucsene Augustin was released today, August 27, 2009 at approximately 4:30pm. The family was all smiles as they drove back to Miami.

“We are relieved that ICE/DHS finally lifted the hold, which facilitated the release of Chandeline and Lucsene. We will continue to closely monitor their immigration cases and that of all the survivors of this tragedy to ensure that all are given due process,” states Danna Magloire, Esq., Attorney Adviser of FANM, Inc. “FANM remains at the service of Chandeline, Lucsene and their family. We are prepared to help them with the burial of baby Luana and support them as they begin their healing,” says Marleine.

FANM, Inc. coordinated the release of the bodies of the three unidentified women who were being held at the Palm Beach County Morgue along with Baby Luana. The three unknown women have been transported St Fort Funeral Home, at 16480 NE 19th Ave, North Miami Beach, FL 33162 (305) 940-1428. St Fort Funeral Home has graciously agreed handle the funeral arrangements without charge. The funeral for these three women is tentatively scheduled for Friday, September 11, 2009 in order to allow the families of the women to come in and identify the bodies. “We hope that the families of these women will come forward so that their lives may be celebrated and remembered,” states Marleine. The families are welcome at anytime during St Fort’s business hours to visit.

South Florida Demands: “Stop Deportations of Haitians Now!”

In Haiti TPS on February 28, 2009 at 1:33 am

Haitian Women of Miami (FAMN),to rally to stop inhumane detentions and deportations

POMPANO BEACH – On Saturday, February 28th at 3:00 p.m. hundreds of Florida residents, including members of Haitian Women of Miami (FAMN), Haitian Citizen United Taskforce (HCUT), the Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center (FIAC), Unite for Dignity and the Florida Immigrant Coalition (FLIC), among many other concerned community members, will gather at the Broward Transitional Center (3900 N. Powerline Rd., Pompano Beach) to acknowledge the contribution the Haitian community continues to make to our state and demand an end to the deportation of our Haitian sisters and brothers.

Haitian deportees face hunger, homelessness and unemployment, if not worse, in the wake of four killer storms that further devastated our hemisphere’s poorest nation. Conditions in Haiti remain abysmal. The storms destroyed 15 percent of its GDP–the equivalent of 8 to 10 Hurricane Katrinas hitting the U.S. in one month. Further, the State Department renewed warnings not to travel to Haiti due to the “destructive impact” of the storms.

The former administration stayed deportations to Haiti in September only to resume them abruptly in December after temporary protected status was denied. This was a last-minute Department of Homeland Security policy reversal. Haitian nationals in Florida live under the constant fear of deportation. Stopping deportations and releasing detainees would restore America’s commitment to the rule of law and the principle of equal protection by granting Haitians the same deserved protection granted other similarly-situated nationals.

“People in the Haitian community could be deported at any time and are even afraid to go to their churches. We should not live in fear, but need to speak out for justice. Stopping the deportations is the first step,” said Bob Louis-Jeune of the Haitian Citizen United Taskforce (HCUT) and Palm Beach Immigrant Rights Coalition (PBIRC).

“We understand that President Obama’s focus is on the economy, but Haitians have been suffering for so long. At a strike of a pen, he can end their misery! It makes strong economic and humanitarian sense for him to do so. It is time to right this wrong” said Marleine Bastien, Founder and Executive Director of FANM/Haitian Women of Miami.

-NOT IN MY NAME-

In Haiti TPS on February 24, 2009 at 7:52 pm


30.000 HAITIANS HAVE BEEN ORDERED DEPORTATION

600 ARE UNDER ICE CUSTODY

AND 200 ARE UNDER HOUSE ARREST

STAND UP FOR HUMAN RIGHTS!!

Fight back the terrorism of immigrant communities!

Fight back the institutional racism!

FLYER
Photobucket

Saturday, February 28, 2009

3:00pm – 6:00pm

Broward Transitional Center

3900 N. Powerline Road

Pompano Beach, FL

ICE HALTS DEPORTATION OF SICK CHILD’S MOTHER

In Haiti TPS on February 23, 2009 at 4:55 am

This Week in Haiti” is the English section of HAITI LIBERTE newsweekly. For
the complete edition with other news in French and Creole, please contact
the paper at (tel) 718-421-0162, (fax) 718-421-3471 or e-mail at
editor@haitiliberte.com. Also visit our website at
http://www.haitiliberte.com

HAITI LIBERTE
“Justice. Verite. Independance.”

* THIS WEEK IN HAITI *

February 11 – 17, 2009
Vol. 2, No. 30

deportation-036
By Francesca Guerrier

“Thank God we are still together!” exclaimed Vialine Jean-Paul after her fortunes took a turn for the better this week.

After living in the U.S. for the past 17 years, the 34-year-old Haitian woman, whose husband and daughter are both U.S. citizens, had been ordered to buy her own plane ticket back to Haiti.

The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) deportation order – with an enforceable date of Monday, February 9 – was handed down despite the grave health problems of Ms. Jean-Paul’s 7-year-old daughter, Angela Julie Timot. The child suffers from several serious medical conditions which require constant care. (The family asked that the illnesses not be specified.) The stress of a prolonged mother-child separation could also hurt the child’s health, doctors said, just as it affected her mother.

“When I was told I was being deported back to Haiti, my blood sugar surged to 500, and I had to be taken to Jackson’s Memorial Hospital,” Ms. Jean-Paul told Haiti Liberté.

On the morning that she was going to turn herself into immigration authorities, Ms. Jean-Paul and her family were en route to the Catholic Service Legal Office in downtown Miami to hold a press conference. But at 8 .15 a.m., an ICE official called her to say that the agency was temporarily staying the deportation order against her.

The press conference ended up being celebratory rather than tragic. Beleaguered ICE officials may well have been seeking a much-needed public relations boost by granting the stay.

The family’s attorneys say that ICE officials gave no explanation for the stay. Ms. Jean-Paul has a pending request for citizenship.

At the press conference, the family rejoiced. Asked for her reaction to the stay of deportation, young Angela said she was “very happy” that her mother was staying so she could study to become a school-teacher when she grows up.

The story of Ms. Jean-Paul, her daughter, and her husband of 11 years, naturalized U.S. citizen Journel Timot, touched many.

Haitian refugee advocates have questioned how the U.S. government can continue deporting undocumented Haitians when as recently as Feb. 2 the State Department warned U.S. citizens to defer all non-essential travel to Haiti due to the nation’s devastation and lawlessness caused by storms last fall that left close to 1000 dead and one million homeless.

On Feb. 5, Haitian President René Préval met with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Washington, DC. He requested $100 million to fill a budget gap which might send desperate Haiti into what he called “anarchy.”

It is unknown whether he again requested Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haitians as he did, unsuccessfully, from the Bush administration last fall.

Hoping for a different response from the Obama administration, refugee advocates have renewed their campaign for TPS for Haitians, which would cover long-time residents and citizenship candidates like Ms. Jean-Paul.

All articles copyrighted Haiti Liberte. REPRINTS ENCOURAGED.
Please credit Haiti Liberte.