Since March, thousands of Haitian migrants have returned to Haiti from the Dominican Republic due to pressure from recent Dominican Republic regulations. Voluntary and forceful returns are resulting in constant waves of Haitian migrants returning all along the border. There is no operational governmental plan to welcome them back. In the border area of Anse à Pitres, returnees have established five migrant camps, and they are growing. CWS staff report the living conditions of these migrants in the camps as inhumane.
According to the National Institute of Social Well-Being and Researches, there are 694 families or 4,109 persons living in the camps. They can be divided in three main categories:
- Dominicans of Haitian descent born in the Dominican Republic without legal documents
- Haitian migrants who lived in the Dominican Republic and registered for the regularization plan to have legal documents
- Haitian migrants who lived in the Dominican Republic but did not have the required papers, nor registered under the regularization plan.
Urgent needs of the migrants are: food and water, clothing, hygiene kits, shelter, transportation fees to travel home for those who remember their community of origin in Haiti and legal assistance for those born in the Dominican Republic before 2010.
With the collaboration of Mennonite Central Committee, the National Institute for Social Well-Being and Researches and the municipality of Anse-à-Pitres, CWS distributed 500 boxes of meat, 250 hygiene kits, 500 blankets and 500 baby kits in the camps Parc Cadeau 1 and 2. Beneficiaries note CWS is the first institution to have assisted them.
CWS is planning with local authorities and international NGOs to provide legal support and transportation fees to allow the migrants to leave the camps.
How to Help
Contributions to support CWS emergency response efforts may be sent to your denomination or to Church World Service, P.O. Box 968, Elkhart, IN 46515. Donations to our emergency response efforts around the globe may also be made online.
CWS is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of churches and agencies engaged in development, humanitarian assistance and advocacy.