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a561: FW: DR1 Daily News -- Wednesday, 30 January 2002 (fwd)

From: Merrie Archer <MArcher@nchr.org>

I have asked DR1 to provide the source for the study and will forward any
information as I receive it.  If anyone has information on the actual
interview of Guy Alexandre done with "Cadena de Noticias", please pass it on
to me.

10. Only 12% of Haitians living in DR have documentation
A survey carried out in 1998 shows that about 72,000 Haitians, or
about 12% of the Haitians living in the DR, have legal documents.
The World Bank estimates that 515,500 to 600,000 Haitians live in
the DR. This is 6% of the DR's total population. Most Haitians,
whether in Haiti or the DR, do not have any legal identification
papers at all.
Newly arrived Haitian ambassador Guy Alexandre estimates that about
half of the Haitians living in the DR were born here. The fact that
the parents do not have legal papers makes it difficult to register
their children in the Dominican system, leaving them in legal limbo
just like their parents.
Alexandre says that despite the fact that Haitians live here in
extreme conditions of poverty, their lives in the DR are better than
they would be in their home country.
He estimates that about 20,000 Haitians return to Haiti every year
after working in construction or on farms. An estimated 500-1,000
Haitians are here as political refugees.
Alexandre said that the Haitians are not discriminated against. "The
Haitians of low income are here to work in areas such as sugar cane
cutting and construction work, and they are subject, I suppose, to
the same harsh working conditions that Dominicans accepting these
jobs are subject to. They are not discriminated against, they are
just exploited by the difficult nature of the jobs and the job
conditions," he said in an interview with Cadena de Noticias.