Haitian-American calling on Barbara Sharief for support

A gathering of neighborhood legislators and pioneers, headed by Enterprise Florida, was last month called for a trade mission. The group included Broward County Mayor Barbara Sharief, and also involved nearby business pioneers of the Dominican Republic. Governor Rick Scott was invited, but couldn't attend.


Now the HAPC (Haitian American Professionals Coalition), a non-profit that supports the necessities of the Haitian people is publicly challenging Sharief, and other pioneers, for their participation.

The reason, of course, stems from the Dominican Republic's unpopular new law that de-nationalized thousands of Haitians. The group views the participation of the assembled leaders as capable of sending the message to the Dominican government that their way is right and not a violation of the human rights of their Haitian neighbors. If not, then they have betrayed the smaller country by choosing to ignore the situation.

The principle issue originates from the HAPC's perspective of the a ceaseless abuse of Haitians by the other country's government. While the two countries share the island of Hispaniola, the Dominican Republic is the richer country and tends to uphold values that would exclude most Haitians from their side of the border.

The September 2013 decision, HAPC says, implies that generations of Dominican families have been stripped of their citizenship. The Representative of HAPC told the journalists of New Times that they understand that the Dominican Republic should be able to say who may or may not be a citizen in their country, but the persecution is systematic and has been so for many years.

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