People from the countries of Haiti, Belize and Samoa were given notice by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that they will lose eligibility for temporary agricultural and seasonal work visas this year.
The decision comes down from President Donald Trump, who’s had a strong stance against immigration against majority Muslim and Black countries since his presidency began in 2017.
As reported by Time, the DHS allows U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to grant H-2A and H-2B visas to citizens of roughly 80 countries, so that they may travel to the U.S. to fill temporary job openings. But a notice set to be published in the Federal Register on Thursday says starting Jan. 18, and continuing through that date next year, the list will be three countries shorter.
In addition to work visas, Haitians who came to America after the deadly 2010 earthquakes were told that their Temporary Protected Status designation would end in 2019. The news came during the same week that Trump allegedly called the Caribbean country a “shithole.”
DHS’s reasoning behind the loss of eligibility for Haitians was due to “extremely high rates of refusal” among Haitians applying for H-2A or H-2B visas and “high levels of fraud and abuse and a high rate of overstaying the terms of their H-2 admission.”
According to the 2009 U.S. Census, there are 830,000 people of Haitian ancestry living in the United States. Haitians were involved in the U.S. labor market at a higher rate than the total population at 71 percent compared to 65 percent of the total population. However, the median earnings of full-time, year-round workers were lower for both Haitian males and females than the total population.