#WelcomeWithDignity: Stop Returning Haitians to Danger

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 17, 2021

CONTACT: press@welcomewithdignity.org 


#WelcomeWithDignity: Stop Returning Haitians to Danger


Washington, D.C. This week the Biden administration resumed removal flights to Haiti, just one month after a catastrophic 7.2 magnitude earthquake exacerbated the humanitarian crisis gripping the country. Prior to the earthquake, political unrest and rampant human rights abuses had made it impossible for Haitians to safely return to their country, which the administration recognized by designating Haiti for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in May. To send Haitians back now should be unthinkable.


Yet the Biden administration seems determined to respond to Haitians seeking safety with cruelty. The administration has indicated it plans to ramp up Title 42 expulsions of desperate Haitians requesting protection at the southern border, in violation of its own laws. The U.S. Coast Guard is intercepting and repatriating those fleeing Haiti by sea, echoing a shameful chapter in our country’s long history of mistreating Haitian refugees.


The #WelcomeWithDignity campaign urges the Biden administration to immediately halt all deportation and expulsion flights to Haiti, and stop punishing Haitians for seeking protection. It is past time for the administration to restore a safe and fair asylum process for Haitians and all others seeking refuge in the United States.


What we are seeing is the continuous exclusion of the rights of Haitians to seek asylum” said Guerline Jozef, co-founder and Executive Director of the Haitian Bridge Alliance. “For too long, U.S. immigration policies have been to bar Haitians from seeking asylum. From Guantanamo Bay to the heightened use of detention centers in the 1970s, and the metering policy, it is disappointing to see that this Administration chose to continue with this same narrative. At this time, we also stand with our brothers and sisters seeking safety in Del Rio, where it is believed that most will be deported. All flights must be stopped, and the Administration must be held accountable for their actions.”


“It is unconscionable that the Biden administration has doubled down on policies that put Haitian families seeking safety back into harm’s way,” said Melina Roche, #WelcomewithDignity Campaign Manager. “President Biden is not only breaking his promise to Haiti to be a “friend,” but he is also breaking his promise to Americans to make the U.S. immigration system more humane. The Biden administration must ensure Haitians, and everyone seeking safety, have access to protections, and it must stop implementing deterrence-based policies, such as deportation flights and repatriation efforts to Haiti.” 


Join the movement and sign our pledge to #WelcomeWithDignity.  

The #WelcomeWithDignity Campaign is composed of more than 85 organizations committed to transforming the way the United States receives and protects people forced to flee their homes to ensure they are treated humanely and fairly. To learn more and join our campaign visit: welcomewithdignity.org