A federal trial in New York challenging the Trump administration's decision to end Temporary Protected Status, or GST, for thousands of Haitians, concluded with the administration that it was so determined that it was ignored government's research flagging health and safety concerns.
A decision in the case is not expected until after March 1, the deadline given by the Eastern District of New York Federal Judge William Kuntz to lawyers to file post-trial submissions.
Sejal Zota, Legal Director of the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, said that they were trying to tell a story during the trial that began on Monday, they would use the time given by Kuntz to submit additional evidence. During the trial, Zota 's team and other lawyers serving as co – counsel in the following case of the termination of the case for the United States. challenge. “
” I'm definitely feeling that they've been able to make a difference. “Very important opportunity for our plaintiffs to have,” Zota said. “
Digital Access For Only $ 0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
GST was first given to Haiti by President Barack Obama after a catastrophic 7.0 magnitude earthquake rocked the country nine years ago Saturday on Jan. 12, 2010.
But as the Trump administration began rescinding the protection for Haiti and Central American nations. The New York lawsuit is the first of the five to go to trial.
During the days of testimony, US Department of Justice The decision, they said, was a point of contention for the US Department of Homeland Security in the United States of America. , DHS 'conclusion that Haiti no longer puts “the condition for designation.”
The announcement of Haiti's termination by then -DHS Acting Secretary Elaine Duke cam 14 days after the protection for 2,500 Nicaragu years was terminated after nearly 20 years. Four months later, Haitians out of New York and Florida, including the Family Action Network Movement in Miami (FANM), filed the class-action lawsuit in the Eastern District of New York.
Like the other suits of Haitians as well as Salvadorans, Hondurans and Sudanese TPS holders, the New York follows argues that Duke violated procedures and TPS holders' due process. The decision, the following alleges, was also rooted in the president's “racially discriminatory attitude toward all-brown and black people.”
During Thursday's closing arguments, attorney Howard Roin, one of several lawyers representing the plaintiffs, cited emails and other internal government documents, including Duke's handwritten November 2017 notes, to bolster plaintiffs' argument: that the White House was not interested in the facts about the conditions in Haiti as DHS officials were deported, and Duke was under repeated pressure to terminate the program.
Rinse also cited documents that were introduced into the court record bolstering advocates' assertions that during the process, there was disagreement between Trump political appointees who wanted to terminate, and government career managers whose research showed that Haiti could not handle
Attorney Paromita Shah said the Haitian TPS termination decision was “prearranged, premeditated from the beginning,” and based on “racial animus.”
“Having a trial “We said that it is important because we know these comments were made in relation to TPS for Haitians,” she said. “There is a long history of bias against Haitians in our immigration system. But it is clear that this administration has at least a public record in making disparaging comments. “
Shah added that the public – and Judge Kuntz – needed to hear” the evidence, the statement, the policies that were in place before termination “
Among the other evidence lawyers presented during the trial: internal emails from US Citizenship and Immigration Services that the agency made inquiries into whether or not Haitian TPS recipients public benefits, committed crimes or provided remittances. DHS, which acknowledges the definition of criminal law, was made to be effective.
Lawyers from the United States of America embassy in Port-au-Prince that concluded Haiti was not ready to receive. The cable is among several senior U.S. diplomats to top State Department officials who have been disregarded despite the fact that mass deportations of Central Americans and Haitians could destabilize the region and trigger a new surge of illegal immigration.
In recommending that TPS end for Haiti, USCIS Francis Cissna Director concluded in a Nov. 3, 2017, memo that “Haiti has made significant progress in recovering From the 2010 earthquake, and no longer continuing to meet the conditions for designation. “
” While lingering effects of the 2010 earthquake remain in housing, infrastructure, damage to the economy, health, sanitation services , Haiti has made significant progress in addressing issues specific to the earthquake, “Cissna argued. He also noted that 98 percent of the camps that sprang up after the quake had closed, and Haitian President Jovenel Moses had said that he would be rebuilding the quake-destroyed presidential palace.
Government lawyers noted these facts during their cross-examinations of witnesses. They also questioned the credentials of some of Haiti's witnesses, and Haitett's Freedom newspaper head Kenneth “Kim” Ives, refuting the quake's death toll.
Ellie Happel, a lawyer and expert witness, testified that the only reason for these numbers is that they are forced to leave the Haitian government. The Director of the Haiti Project at the NYU School of Law's Global Justice Clinic, Happen noted that the Haitian government had not kept its promise to rebuild housing after the quake.
She also testified that while Cissna had described Haiti's erratic GDP growth as “predominantly positive,” averaging 1.9 percent between 2010 and 2016, he had failed to consider that it was rapidly depreciating. , said Beatrice Lindstrom, an attorney who is attending to the courts of the day.
“The evidence leaves no doubt that Secretary Duke's decision was made under the influence of a racist White House, and is irreconcilable with the facts and findings of the government. own experts, “said Lindstrom, whose boss, Brian Concannon, was among those who were certified for the plaintiffs. Concannon and Lindstrom are with the Boston-based Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti.
One of the longest testimonies came from Leon Rodriguez, the former director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Obama administration. On the other hand, Rodriguez testifies that the Trump administration approach is not only illegal, but also illegal. Cissna, he said, had failed to consider the totality of Haiti's circumstances, such as food insecurity and crime statistics,
Cissna's recommendation violated the law, Rodriguez said “Yes.”
The Floridians, seven New Yorkers, the weekly Brooklyn-based Haitian newspaper Haiti Freedom, and the Miami-based Haitian rights advocacy group FANM
Ives, the newspaper head, testified that one of his paper's hand reporters and fundraisers, Jackson Rateau, would have to return to Haiti should he lose his status and would not be able to effectively do his job. During the hearing, the government sought to address the issues of devastation, playing a role in the fight against terrorism. He said the number was closer to between 60,000 and 80,000.
Haitian government – not NGOs – it was listed at $ 316,000, six months after the disaster
“Haiti still has not recovered from the earthquake, has Hurricane Matthew in 2016 and Hurricane Irma in 2017, “Ives said.
The plaintiffs are asking for the opinion that DHS is not a proper review and must conduct Haiti can absorb the return of its immigrants. Kuntz makes, while not compulsory, will be “persuasive precedent.”
“A decision on the merits especially after trial would have collateral consequences. cases, “said Raymond Audain, a NAACP Legal Defense Fund attorney, who described it as a fair judge. “We are hoping for a favorable ruling.”
Audain said the NAACP Legal Defense Fund was the first to sue the government on behalf of Haitian TPS holders, a Maryland federal judge still has not ruled the government's motion to have the complaint dismissed.
In October, a federal judge in California granted a temporary injunction blocking the administration of deporting Haitian TPS holders and their deadlines approach. U.S. Judge District Judge Edward Chen granted the temporary injunction as part of a California lawsuit filed by lawyers on behalf of Haiti, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Sudan who have U.S.-born children. The decision is being appealed by the government and experts say Kuntz's ruling should have no impact on the injunction.
In addition to the California and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund suits, there are two others under the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice. It was written on behalf of Salvadoran, Honduran and Haitian in Boston federal court. The committee previously challenged the constitutionality of President Donald Trump's executive order targeting sanctuary cities.