This blog is difficult to write but I want to request prayer support for the horrible situation of the Haitians in the Dominican Republic.
The problem between the Dominicans and the Haitians continues to escalate. Thank you for taking the time to read this blog to the end which includes two newspaper articles of more than a year ago copied below.
The Haitian people in the Dominican Republic are being physically and sexually abused and even killed. Students are being taken out of classes in schools and also university and abused. In one of this week’s newspapers there are photos of a young girl in school uniform who had been sexually abused, killed and thrown aside. Too, a photo of a young Haitian man who is a professor in the DR and currently working on his Master’s Degree who had been badly physically abused. His face was swollen beyond recognition.
One Haitian man was killed by hanging in a public square and the Haitian flag burned. Others have been shot. A terrible thing is going on in the DR against Haitians. I would like us Christians to come together in prayer against these atrocious acts of racism.
Yesterday in Haiti retaliation happened by people burning a bus driven by a Dominican, but the driver is okay. The Haitian people are rightfully fed up and feeling fearful but this kind of retaliation is not the answer.
Last week the director of our HATS school, Met Luckner, along with the school superintendent and secondary teachers met with students and elementary teachers, and gave them information as to the abuse the Haitians in the Dominican Republic are enduring. It is happening daily and continuing to escalate. While talking to our students about it twice Luckner could not continue and the superintendent or a secondary teacher filled in so Luckner could compose himself. I had to leave the church where the students were assembled three times due to not being able to control the flowing of tears.
|Luckner speaking to our students with support of superintendent and secondary teachers|
When some of the abuse and killing is happening videos are being made of it and posted. Today I saw a video online of a severe beating to a Haitian man whose arms and legs were tied and whose mouth was gagged. The beating was followed by stabbing with a huge knife. This much I saw. The stabbing apparently turning into killing and dismemberment but I chose to not watch it any further. I felt that to write about it, to request prayer support for the Haitian people in the DR, I needed to see some of it myself.
Thank you for joining with us in prayer for the Haitian people who are in the Dominican Republic.
The Dominican Republic’s Discrimination of Haitians
By Editorial Board November 7, 2013
HAITI AND the Dominican Republic, uneasy neighbors on the sun-baked island of Hispaniola, share a tangled and contentious history, by turns violent, cooperative and exploitative. That is the background, though hardly an excuse, for an unconscionable decision by the highest Dominican court that strips at least 200,000 ethnic Haitian migrants of any claim to citizenship, including those born on Dominican soil decades ago.
The court’s decision enshrines the deep-seated racism and discrimination suffered by Haitian migrants and their children, who have worked back-breaking jobs in Dominican sugar-cane fields and construction sites for many years. It leaves the migrants stateless, lacking even the certainty that their children can receive an education.
Compounding this injustice, the court ordered the authorities to comb through birth records, back to 1929, to weed out ethnic Haitians no longer entitled to citizenship. Tens of thousands will be left in legal limbo, including those who have never set foot in Haiti and speak no Creole, Haiti’s main language.
The Dominican economy, much like that of the United States, depends on migrant labor to fill jobs at the bottom of the wage scale. And much like the United States’ political class, Dominican authorities have balked at extending fair treatment and equal status to those migrants.
For many years, the children of Haitian laborers born on Dominican soil were denied official documents on the grounds that their parents were “in transit” — even if they’d been working in the country for decades. A constitutional amendment in 2010 codified that systemic discrimination, and the court decision, handed down last month, set the rule in stone — and applied it retroactively. The court gave officials one year to draw up a list of residents to be excluded from or stripped of citizenship.
The implications of the court’s xenophobic ruling are disastrous. Ethnic Haitians — as well as the Dominican-born children of immigrants from Europe, China and elsewhere — may no longer be entitled to subsidized tuition, public health insurance or other benefits.As in the United States, mass deportation of immigrants on whom the economy relies is not a viable option for the Dominican Republic. The Dominican president, Danilo Medina, acknowledged that the decision had created “a human problem that we have to solve.”
U.S. officials should press the issue through diplomatic channels with their Dominican counterparts. By ignoring the plight of ethnic Haitians, the international community would only compound an injustice.
Why Is the Dominican Republic Forcing Out Haitians?
[OPINION] France Francois says recent anti-Haitian legislation will decimate the Dominican Republic
By France François
BLACKOUT: Why Is the Dominican Republic Forcing Out Haitians?
A lot of tension and uproar has followed the Dominican court ruling that retroactively and arbitrarily stripped citizenship from an estimated 200,000-300,000 Dominicans of Haitian descent in the country since 1929 and labeled these people as being “in transit,” despite the fact that few people spend 84 years and 4 generations “in transit” in the same country—imagine the profound social upheaval that would ensue if the United States retroactively revoked citizenship from all Irish-Americans in the U.S. since 1929. The impact on the lives of these people suddenly made stateless are profound- access to public education, voting rights, health care, and even birth certificates and ID cards in the DR are all reserved for citizens alone.
The two countries have established separate identities grounded in their experiences with colonialism. “…No other group is like the Haitians which arrived [in the DR] with the cultural baggage of a history of black pride in a country that chose to identify with the European elite,” historian Edward Paulino noted to the New York Times. While Haiti so ascribes to black nationalism that even the Haitian constitution declares all its citizens black, the Dominican Republic, in contrast, has tried to distance itself from its African roots. In the DR, to be black is to be Haitian, and to be called black is tantamount to a slur.
Too, I ask you to join me in prayer for Ti Luc to finally receive a visitor’s visa to Canada. Yesterday Luckner and I went to the Visa Application Office in Port au Prince and filed an application on his behalf. We gave a lot of supporting documents but there is a chance we could still be turned down as none of the copies we left there are certified. Our copies cannot be certified as we do not have originals. The lawyer working on finishing the adoption and getting the passport for Ti Luc has been missing in action for some time. This has been a huge problem for us. We, however, know that God is in the miracle business – he has already done a miracle in Ti Luc’s life – and we are praying the visa will be okayed with ordinary copies. We have a tracking number to check the progress of our application online. We were told we will be called when they need us to return to PAP to pick up Ti Luc’s passport. Please join us in prayer that when his passport is returned to us it will have a visitor’s visa in it. Thank you for your past and for your ongoing support of HATS-Haiti, and for joining your prayers with ours for these two requests.
|My son, Ti Luc, who needs a visa|
Thank you for taking the time to read this blog and for praying for the precious Haitian people in the DR, and for my son, Ti Luc.