The following statement is from Deyonne Primo, a Texas Organizing Project (TOP) member and immigrant from Guyana, in response to U.S. Border Patrol agents physically beating Haitians seeking asylum Monday:
“The U.S. government yesterday committed state violence against asylum-seekers in broad daylight.
“The usage of slave-era tactics to dehumanize Haitian refugees is just the latest disturbing escalation in our nation’s criminalization of migrants and those seeking asylum.
“What we witnessed further shines a light on the everyday injustices our current immigration system, classist in structure and rooted in white supremacy, inflicts on those who are escaping dire conditions to seek a better life for themselves and their family. By building solidarity through connecting the lived experiences of Black and Latino migrants, TOP’s immigration justice campaign for now a decade has fought to transform this oppressive system from the inside out with progressive, humane policies.
“Having endured this summer the compounding tragedies of a presidential assassination, a massive earthquake claiming more than 2,000 lives, and a tropical storm causing widespread flooding, the Haitians settled along our southern border are refugees who must have their right to seek asylum fully honored.
“The Biden administration, namely DHS Secretary Mayorkas, must answer for this appalling display and be held accountable for the cruelty that transpired. Additionally, Republican Congressman Tony Gonzalez, who represents Del Rio, needs to recognize that increased militarization of our border will only lead to more suffering and make matters worse.
“In response to this humanitarian crisis, we are calling on our supporters to sign this petition demanding President Biden stop deportations of Haitian asylum-seekers. We also encourage donations to Haitian Bridge Alliance, an advocacy group working on the ground in Del Rio to help provide direct relief for these asylum-seekers at this pivotal time.”
Texas Organizing Project organizes Black and Latino communities in Dallas, Harris and Bexar counties with the goal of transforming Texas into a state where working people of color have the power and representation they deserve. For more information, visit organizetexas.org.
This statement was sent out September 21, 2021.