Justice for Detained Haitian Asylum Seekers
WHEREAS, since 1972, Haitians have been dying on the high seas; and
WHEREAS, there are more than 270 detained Haitians in Miami alone; and
WHEREAS, 185 immigrants sailed approximately 650 miles in a 31-foot sailboat and were brought to the US by the Coast Guard on December 3, 2001; and
WHEREAS, 167 Haitians were permitted to apply for asylum and convinced Asylum Officers that they have substantial likelihood of proving their eligibility for asylum in the US; and
WHEREAS, prior to December 2001, Haitians who passed their interviews were quickly released; and
WHEREAS, Haitians seeking asylums legal representation report a lack of adequate space to conduct interviews and wait long hours to visit their clients; and
WHEREAS, Haitians that are not being released are held in overcrowded detention facilities in Miami, FL; and
WHEREAS, Congressman John Conyers cited "serious deficiencies" at Krome Service Processing Center, Turner Gulford Knight Correctional Center and the special INS facility for children without guardians; and
WHEREAS, women with children are taken to local hotels which have no access to education or recreational activities.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) urges an end to the unjust US immigration policies concerning Haitian asylum seekers in the US; and
BE IT FURTHERRESOLVED,that the NAACP request that Haitian children being detained have adequate access to continuing educational and recreational activities; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED,that the NAACP urges that the standards of facilities holding detainees be improved to require adequate, standardized housing facilities; and
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that the NAACP requests that all Haitians who have successfully passed their interviews be immediately released and given work permits to become productive members of society.