Boston – The Boston Foundation, Greater Boston’s community foundation, today released the following statement concerning the decision to end Temporary Protected Status designation for nearly 50,000 Haitians in the United States, including nearly 5,000 in the Greater Boston area.
“The decision to end the Temporary Protected Status of thousands of Haitians in the United States by July 2019 ignores the desires of the Haitian government and local leaders, and the economic realities of Haiti since the 2010 earthquake.
“The Boston Foundation launched the Haiti Fund in the aftermath of the 2010 quake, and the ensuing 7 years have shown us both the ingenuity and determination of the Haitian people, and the true level of devastation the earthquake caused in the Western Hemisphere’s most impoverished country. Today, the Haiti Development Institute is working to strengthen Haitian-led grassroots economic and social development in Haiti. The process is promising, but there is no question that TPS has provided thousands of families with opportunities to succeed in Greater Boston and in other cities, and allowed them to support other family members back in Haiti.
“But make no mistake – TPS has provided value to the Greater Boston economy as well. Nearly 5,000 TPS-protected Haitians live in Greater Boston, and estimates from the Immigrant Legal Resource Center suggest they provide $25 million or more annually to the Greater Boston GDP. Deporting them could cost millions more.
“Simply ending TPS is bad for those it protects, and the communities in which they live. We will work shoulder to shoulder with Haitian and immigrant groups as well as local leaders to ensure this currently untenable situation is resolved. We owe it to thousands of our neighbors to make sure their voices are heard, and their rights are protected.”
The Boston Foundation, Greater Boston’s community foundation, is one of the largest community foundations in the nation, with net assets of some $1 billion. In 2016, the Foundation and its donors made $100 million in grants to nonprofit organizations and received gifts of more than $107 million. In celebration of its Centennial in 2015, the Boston Foundation launched the Campaign for Boston to strengthen the Permanent Fund for Boston, the principal endowment fund focused on the most pressing needs of Greater Boston. The Foundation is proud to be a partner in philanthropy, with more than 1,000 separate charitable funds established by donors either for the general benefit of the community or for special purposes. The Boston Foundation also serves as a major civic leader, think tank and advocacy organization, commissioning research into the most critical issues of our time and helping to shape public policy designed to advance opportunity for everyone in Greater Boston. The Philanthropic Initiative (TPI), a distinct operating unit of the Foundation, designs and implements customized philanthropic strategies for families, foundations and corporations around the globe. For more information about the Boston Foundation and TPI, visit tbf.org or call 617-338-1700.