Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick: Dominican Republic Deporting Haitians Due to Race

Last week, U.S. Rep. Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick, D-Fla., weighed in after reports emerged about the Dominican Republic’s mass deportations of Haitian migrants.

“Under the orders of President Luis Abinader, the Dominican Republic has deported thousands of Haitian migrants and is engaging in discriminatory and racial profiling tactics to carry out its ill-treatment of Haitians,” Cherfilus-McCormick said. “Historically, race relations have unfortunately factored into the fractured relationship between the Dominican Republic and Haiti. Dating back to the late 1930s, the Dominican Republic carried out an ethnic cleansing campaign against Haitians, which resulted in at least 25,000 deaths. Nearly a century later, structural racism is still rearing its head, yet this time, it poses a global threat to Black people who may travel to the Dominican Republic, irrespective of nationality. In effect, the Dominican Republic’s deportations of its ‘darker’ neighbor amount to a modern-day ethnic cleansing.

“The mass repatriation of Haitian migrants by the Dominican Republic is inhumane and must cease. Between July and October 2022, Dominican immigration authorities reportedly deported nearly 44,000 migrants, many of whom are Haitians. What is more, it has become apparent that Haitian migrants and other Blacks are being targeted because of their skin complexion. Additionally, according to UNICEF, the Dominican Republic has expelled at least 1,800 unaccompanied children since January 2022. Children lack the legal means to provide proof of citizenship. It is obvious that Haitian migrants and children are being denied due process. The sole factor used to determine whether someone should be deported is race. This is reprehensible,” she added.

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