The pace and magnitude of Haiti's recovery after a devastating earthquake are at the center of a New York trial that will determine whether the Trump administration can end the protection status. temporarily for Haitian nationals.
The case focuses on the special status granted to approximately 50,000 Haitians living and working temporarily in the United States after the 2010 earthquake. In addition, the Center for Migration Studies estimates that Haitian SPT holders have 27,000 children born on American soil. .
During the trial held in New York, Wednesday's focus was on e-mails exchanged between US officials.
Migrants' defenders said the Trump administration was so eager to end the program that it chose to ignore the information provided by its own officials in Haiti, saying the Caribbean island was not ready to allow the return of its citizens.
"The problem" with this analysis, wrote in an email from October 2017 Kathy Kovarik, appointed by Trump to the Department of Homeland Security, is that the text says we recommend an extension (of TPS) because we let's talk a lot. a lot about how bad it is.
"The fundamental problem is that it's bad," said another official. "We can … try to get more, and / or review the conditions of the country that we have again looking for positive jewels, but the conditions are."
The non-jury trial is the first of seven cases filed in federal courts across the country to block the end of the GST program, which has allowed approximately 300,000 people from Haiti, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Sudan and other countries stay in the United States after their departure. countries of origin have been victims of natural disasters or violence.
In an interview with VOA last year, Haiti's ambassador to the United States, Paul Altidor, claimed that the island had not recovered enough to make face the sudden influx. There are more than 50,000 Haitian GST holders.
"The day after the earthquake … many friends and countries from around the world came together to engage and support Haiti," said Altidor. "Unfortunately, many of these promises never materialized, so the resources that Haiti has relied upon to rebuild itself have been lost, and some have been wasted."
Haiti suffered a cholera epidemic following the earthquake, and in 2016, the country was hit by the most violent hurricane since 1964, which caused severe housing and food shortages and damages of more than $ 2 billion.
VOON Ramon Taylor contributed to this report.