Bahamian PM Hubert Minnis Urged to Put a Moratorium to All Deportations and Ease Rule for Refugees and Immigrants to Access Services

Haitians who fled storm-ravaged Abaco waiting on a dock in Nassau, Bahamas. FANM and other groups have asked the Bahamas to stop deportations and allow access to services after Hurricane Dorian’s destruction. Credit: Mike Stocker/South Florida Sun Sentinel

Family Action Network Movement (FANM) and a growing list of immigrants, faith, and social justice organizations urge Prime Minister Hubert Minnis to put a moratorium on all deportations and to waive any and all requirements to prove immigration status in order to access assistance for all immigrants and refugees in this time of grave crisis.

In a letter to Prime Minister Hubert Minnis, released Sep. 6, FANM reports receiving an SOS from Haitian immigrants who fear seeking assistance because they were reportedly asked for immigration papers.

Marleine Bastien, Executive Director of Family Action Network Movement (FANM) stated: “Access to hurricane relief efforts after a natural disaster is a fundamental human right, seeking these services should never lead to intimidation, detention, or deportation.”

“Access to hurricane relief efforts after a natural disaster is a fundamental human right.”

Consequently, we, the undersigned organizations urge the Prime Minister to put a moratorium on all deportations in addition to waving the legal documents’ requirement for life-saving and other pertinent services. This is the humane, compassionate, and sensible thing to do under these grave circumstances.

Haitians in the U.S., including some FANM employees, have been having a hard time locating families in the Bahamas. They fear the worst, especially since there seems to be a blackout on their very existence and the troubling news of being asked for immigration papers to access vital services.

Family Action Network Movement (FANM) – formerly known as Fanm Ayisyen Nan Miyami/ Haitian Women of Miami – is a private not-for-profit organization dedicated to the social, economic, financial and political empowerment of low to moderate-income families to give them the tools to transform their communities.

Supporting Organizations

Ira Kurzban, Immigration Attorney
Kurzban Immigration Sourcebook
Alana Greer, Community Justice Project
Leonie Hermantin, Sant La Neighborhood Center
Isabel Vinent, Florida Immigrant Coalition
Marcia Olivo, Miami Workers Center
Andrea Mercado, New Florida Majority
David McDougal, Miami Climate Alliance
Jonathan Fried, We Count
Resilience Force/ National Guestworkers Alliance
Thomas Kennedy, FLIC Votes
Tessa Painson, Haitian American Community Development Corporation
Archdeacon Jean Fritz Bazin, Episcopal Diocese of S Florida
Bud Conlin, Friends of Miami-Dade Detainees
Stephanie Phadael, Families Rights Network
Rosie Appolon, Bethel Church
Haïti Liberté
International Support Haiti Network
Jimy Mertune and Tina Lorquet, Vwa Ayiti
Brax Tinkler, Power U
Lourdes Villanueva, Redland Christian Migrant Association
Jonathan Alingu, Central Florida Job with Justice
Trenise Bryant, Miami Workers Center
Jack Lieberman, 350 South Florida
Progressive Jewish Action
South Florida Labor Community Alliance

(List in formation)

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