Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Chairwoman of the House Committee on Financial Services, issued the following statement condemning the United States Border Patrol’s treatment of Haitian migrants.
“In every sense of the word – I am absolutely outraged by the United States Border Patrol agents’ incomprehensible treatment and abuse of Haitian migrants seeking refuge in the United States. Right now, Haitians are trying to pick up the pieces of their lives after a devastating earthquake in August – the second catastrophic earthquake to hit the island nation in less than twelve years. Haitians are reeling from the aftermath of the assassination of Prime Minister Jovenel Moïse and the lack of a credible, functioning government that has followed. Haitians are facing widespread gang violence that has paralyzed entire communities. The situation in Haiti is devastating, and Haitians are attempting to seek refuge in the United States for the possibility of a better, safer life for themselves and their families.
“Fueled by the ongoing strife in Haiti, Haitians are making long and dangerous journeys to reach the United States – a country they believe is fueled by compassion and justice – only to be met by the brutality of cowboys on horseback with whips. The images of this unconscionable attack by United States border agents on helpless Haitian migrants have an uncanny resemblance to the photos in our history books that show the truth of how Black people were treated in this country in centuries past. I demand that this detestable treatment of Haitians be stopped immediately!
“Not only am I outraged by the reprehensible behavior of these border agents who seem to lack humanity, I am extremely disappointed in the Biden Administration for its willingness to continue the racist application of immigration policies and tactics utilized by Donald Trump, the most xenophobic and dangerous president in our nation’s history.
“I am calling on the United States to allow the Haitian migrants to file for the refugee or migration status they are seeking as allowed by the United States Constitution and urge the Department of Homeland Security to conduct its investigation into the matter in a comprehensive and credible manner.”