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The Advocates Condemns CBP Abuse of Haitians

September 22, 2021

Biden Administration Immigration Actions Are Affront to Human Rights

Media Contact: Michele Garnett McKenzie, Deputy Director

612-360-3818 /

Minneapolis, MN

The Advocates for Human Rights is outraged by the physical assaults and verbal abuse of Haitians by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers in Del Rio. "This conduct violates the fundamental human right to seek asylum and runs counter to our values as a nation," says Robin Phillips, executive director of The Advocates for Human Rights. "DHS must take immediate action to investigate and hold individuals accountable for these human rights violations. DHS also must fix the systemic failures and toxic organizational culture which allows abuses like this to occur. The United States must commit to a migration system that recognizes and holds people accountable for ensuring human dignity."

The CBP abuse reflects DHS' new policy to "address" migration in Del Rio, which fails to include steps to protection of asylum seekers and other vulnerable migrants from Haiti and elsewhere. It also comes the same week as the administration's request for additional funding for CBP/ICE operations, an appeal of a Federal Court injunction against Title 42 expulsions under the pretense of public health concerns, promises to restart the so-called Migrant Protection Protocols which have left tens of thousands of asylum seekers to languish in Mexico while their asylum applications are process, continuing detention and removal of Haitians despite devastating political and natural disasters in that country, and preparations for detaining migrants at Guantanamo Bay.

The Advocates is incredibly concerned by these actions. Phillips stated: "We are disheartened that the Biden administration appears to be bowing to false political calculations at the cost of migrants, vulnerable persons, and others. We call on the administration to reverse course and make good on the commitment to human rights in immigration policy."

We call on the Administration to immediately:

· Stop all deportations: Haitian migrants are refugees, fleeing dangerous conditions in Haiti, and shouldn't be sent back without an opportunity to claim asylum or other protections.

· Terminate Title 42: don't defend it and stop using it to unjustifiably expel Haitians.

· Grant humanitarian parole: Haitians seeking protections must be granted humanitarian parole to allow them to be transferred to safer conditions and away from CBP mistreatment.

· Provide humanitarian assistance: Provide safe shelter, water, food and health care to Haitians who are in Del Rio awaiting an opportunity to request protection.

· Investigate CBP: The Office of the Inspector General must immediately an investigation into the use of whips, or whip-like devices, and other mistreatment of Haitians by Border Patrol.


Document: AHR Condemns CBP Abuse of Haitians 9.22.2021.pdf