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For Immediate Release:
May 22, 2017
Media Contact:
Mac-Kinley Lauriston

Commissioner Monestimes statement on Trump Administrations decision on TPS extension for Haitians

MIAMI – Commissioner Jean Monestime statement on the Trump administration’s decision to extend Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haitians for only six months:

“This decision is tantamount to a denial and serves as proof that the administration is either out of touch with the reality on the ground in Haiti or downright insensitive to the plight of the 58,000 Haitian Nationals currently living in the U.S. under TPS. Now that the Trump administration has failed in their hunt for possible crimes committed by these law-abiding citizens, they have resorted to use as basis for their decision, Haiti’s success in recovering from the devastating earthquake of 2010 and the impending departure of the United Nations Stabilizing Mission in Haiti. In doing so, the Trump administration has decided to forgo some very important facts that do not support their decision; the ongoing cholera epidemic brought to Haiti by United Nations peacekeepers which continues to inflict death on the people of Haiti and the devastating hurricane last October which decimated southern Haiti. Secretary of Homeland Security John F. Kelly stated that “the six month extension from July 23, 2017 through January 22, 2018 should allow TPS recipients living in the United States time to attain travel documents and make other necessary arrangements for their ultimate departure from the United States.” Basically, giving 58,000 people seven months to undo what they have built in seven years, including making the wrenching decision to separate from their American born children in the hope of giving them a better life. Sending back 58,000 people to Haiti that is still trying to recover from disasters that are no fault of theirs, would surely serve to destabilize the country; but, it is not without consequence to the local communities in which they have become entrenched. Communities where they live, raise a family, worship and contribute to the local economy. I strongly urge the Trump administration to reconsider their decision and stand up for what America has always stood for, A BEACON OF LIGHT and live up to the words penned by poet Emma Lazarus and inscribed on a plaque placed on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty:

“‘Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!’”