U.S. Government Welcomes Haitian Orphans While Resuming Removal of Haitians With Criminal Records


USCIS Teleconference to Discuss the Help Haiti Act of 2010

The USCIS Field Operations Directorate and Office of Public Engagement invite all interested parties to participate in a teleconference on Wednesday, February 9, 2011 at 2:00pm (EST) regarding the Help Haitian Adoptees Immediately to Integrate Act of 2010 (Help HAITI Act of 2010). The purpose is to provide families of paroled Haitian orphans with information about filing for lawful permanent resident status (LPR) in order to get a green card. President Obama signed this new Act into law on December 9, 2010.

Prior to the Session

USCIS asks that all participants review the information on the USCIS website, about filing for a green card under the Help HAITI Act, prior to the date of the call. You can find this information by doing the following:

1) Log on to www.uscis.gov
2) Select the “Help Haiti Act of 2010” link under the “Green Card (Permanent Residence)” heading or select the link on the main page banner.

To Join the Call

To participate in the call, please email the Office of Public Engagement so that there are a sufficient number of phone lines. Emails can be sent to [email protected]. Please reference “Haiti” in the subject line of your email.

On the day of the teleconference, please dial 1-888-677-1830 and provide the following passcode: HAITI. USCIS recommends calling in 10-15 minutes prior to the start of the teleconference.

United States Resumes Removal of Haitians as of January 20

On January 20, the U.S. government resumed removal of Haitians from the United States for the first time since the devastating earthquake that struck the poor Caribbean nation on January 12, last year.

Barbara Gonzalez, a spokeswoman for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, confirmed that 27 Haitians with criminal records in the United States had been returned to Haiti.

They were the first of about 700 Haitians classified as “criminal aliens” who have been targeted for removal to the Western Hemisphere’s poorest country this year,according to Gonzalez. She added, “These are the first removals since they were suspended last year,” confirming the end of a moratorium on such deportations declared immediately after the earthquake.

“All of those removed were men, who had been previously convicted of a crime in the U.S.,” she said.

She noted that the removals were consistent with a policy of removing Haitians in the United States who pose “a threat to public safety.”

Gonzalez said those deported included Lyglenson Lemorin, a 35-year-old legal U.S. resident, who was acquitted of all charges in Miami’s Liberty City Seven terrorism-conspiracy case in December 2007.

Haiti is still recovering from the crippling earthquake, grappling with a political dispute over the presidential election results from November, and struggling with a cholera epidemic that has killed nearly 4,000 people.

Immigration officials have stated that they will only remove Haitians who were convicted of crimes and finished serving their sentences. Other Haitians, including non-criminals and those granted a special immigration classification known as Temporary Protected Status, are unlikely to face removal at this time.


About Igbanugo Partners International Law Firm

Igbanugo Partners Int'l Law Firm is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. It focuses on (1) U.S. immigration law and (2) international trade law in Sub-Saharan Africa.

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