Caribbean News Now!

About Us Contact Us


Jump to your country or territory of interest

Advertise with us

Reach our daily visitors from around the Caribbean and throughout the world. Click here for rates and placements.


Submit news and opinion for publication


Click here to receive our daily regional news headlines by email.


Click here to browse our extensive archives going back to 2004

Also, for the convenience of our readers and the online community generally, we have reproduced the complete Caribbean Net News archives from 2004 to 2010 here.

Climate Change Watch

The Caribbean is especially vulnerable to rising sea levels brought about by global warming. Read the latest news and information here...

Follow Caribbean News Now on Twitter
Connect with Caribbean News Now on Linkedin

News from the Caribbean:

Prev    Next
Personal story reflects questionable Haitian immigration policy in Turks and Caicos
Published on May 23, 2015Email To Friend    Print Version

By Caribbean News Now contributor

PROVIDENCIALES, TCI -- In mid May, a young Haitian woman and her ten-year-old daughter found that, after five years of legal residency in the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI), due to government policy they had to return to Haiti to join her siste’rs family struggling in Haiti to survive. She did not want to leave and she had to remove her child, a talented youngster, from school, losing an entire school year of class work. Local sources reported they and other residents had tears streaming down their faces as they left.

The Haitian woman was employed taking care of a bedridden senior Turks and Caicos Islander. The senior, distressed by the woman's leaving, was also tearful. The woman’s departure surprised local residents, as she had kept her status secret because of government policy.

However, due to an expired work permit, which was in the process of renewal, with fees already paid, the Haitian woman yielded to pressure from her estranged husband who now resides as an illegal resident in the USA. An interview with the woman revealed the husband is jealous and had threatened to call the local TCI Immigration Office, who would then be forced due to government policy to arrest the woman and child.

The woman reported to the interviewer that she has no knowledge of her husband’s intend to petition the US government to bring her and her child to the US at some future time. Other Haitians are reporting that the man has grown children from a current first wife still in Haiti.

The woman has also reported she also was under pressure from a local Jamaican woman who wanted her job. This Jamaican had walked off the same job years prior. The Jamaican woman's work permit under her current employer is expiring and not due to be renewed. This woman is now canvassing locals for loans as she prepares to leave if unable to find new employment.

Minister of Immigration DonHue Gardiner
It has been the policy of the current immigration minister DonHue Gardiner to pressure Haitians to leave TCI. This was disclosed in one of the early House of Assembly meetings following the end of British-imposed direct rule in Nevember 2012, when the minister stunned the territory, saying he intended to make illegal immigrants’ lives “unbearable” as he used his powers to hunt them down.

Repeated landings of illegal Haitian sloops overloaded with people and subsequent repatriations have given meaning to the minister’s statement.

Gardiner revealed in the most recent House meeting that he has given up trying to conclude a memorandum of understanding on immigration with the Haitian government, after being in negotiations with Haitian officials for over a year. It is believed by Turks and Caicos Islanders that the minister’s reputation and earlier statement soured his ability to negotiate.

Five- and six-month delays in the issue of work permits and hundreds of repatriations have driven many Haitians underground after previously holding legal work permits. With the TCI’s non-tourism related economy in serious decline, many Haitian nationals who have been legally employed for years now struggle to survive.

With new hotel developments stalled, there is little construction work and TC Islanders have been pressuring government for work. This is believed to be at least one reason behind the government’s policy to pressure work permit holders to leave. However, the work performed by the Haitians is not what the TC Islanders are petitioning for.

The government has recently announced it will not approve any new work permits until employment is stabilized. However, the government continues to approve massive renewals of work permits held by foreign workers in the existing hotel industry.
Reads : 16219

Click here to receive daily news headlines from Caribbean News Now!



No comments on this topic yet. Be the first one to submit a comment.


Send us your comments!  

Send us your comments on this article. All fields are required.

For your contribution to reach us, you must (a) provide a valid e-mail address and (b) click on the validation link that will be sent to the e-mail address you provide.  If the address is not valid or you don't click on the validation link, it will be a waste of your time typing your submission because we will never see it!

Your Name:

Your Email:

(Validation required)

Enter Code *


Prev    Next



Other Headlines:

Regional Sports: