WASHINGTON, DC—Representative Eliot L. Engel, the leading Democrat on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today released the following statement regarding the Administration’s announcement that in early 2015 the Department of Homeland Security will expand the legal process for migration from Haiti for those separated from their families.
“I am pleased by the Obama Administration’s announcement today that in early 2015, the Department of Homeland Security will implement a Haitian Family Reunification Parole Program. This will allow Haitians with approved immigration petitions to reunite with their family living in the United States while they await their visas, rather than remaining on wait lists. I hope that expanding the legal process for migration from Haiti will end the sad separation of so many Haitian families caused by immigration backlogs.
“This coming January marks the five-year anniversary of the devastating January 12, 2010, earthquake which killed 200,000 Haitians and impacted scores more. While the country has made impressive strides towards recovery, it still remains the poorest nation in the hemisphere. As a longtime supporter of Haiti in Congress, I believe the United States must stand by Haiti. Today’s announcement is just one small way in which we can continue to support the Haitian people and the Haitian-American community.”
Ranking Member Engel, along with 63 of his colleagues in Congress, sent a letter to the President on June 30, urging him to direct the Department of Homeland Security to create a program that would allow Haitians with approved family-based visa petitions to come to the United States and work while they await their visas.
Read the letter Rep. Engel sent to the President here