The election of Donald Trump as the 45th President of the United States of America (USA) has seen some expressing concerns, since he has committed to deporting all illegal migrants from that country when he officially takes office.
National Security Minister Hermangild Francis speaking on this issue expressed some concern, stating that it will be an important juncture in Caribbean history if this happens.
“I think the prime ministers of the Caribbean will meet and we will have dialogue with the new president. I don’t want to jump to a conclusion as to what may happen, but I think the ministers will be proactive in having an audience with him and telling their concerns,” the minister said.
Trump confirmed in his first television interview on CBS ’60 Minutes’ after being elected president that he stands firm on his word to deport millions of illegal migrants.
“What we are going to do is get the people that are criminal and have criminal records, gang members, drug dealers, where a lot of these people, probably 2 million, it could be even 3 million, we are getting them out of our country or we are going to incarcerate.”
Several months earlier, Prime Minister Allen Chastanet spoke about the US deportation and its impact on regional crime, referring to the American deportation policy as ‘horrific’ as it results in thousands of criminal deportees with little ties to their nations of origin being thrust upon them.
Chastanet had told Barbados Nation in an interview in July of this year on the sidelines of the CARICOM Heads of Government meeting held in Guyana, that the US deports criminals while also cutting funds for regional security resulting in a high vulnerability for crime.
The US had cut support to the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) following the alleged extrajudicial killings by cops in 2010 and 2011. This matter has yet to be resolved but the new government has committed to getting it done.
Head of the Caribbean Immigrant Services in New York Irwine G. Clare, Sr. O.D. told News Americas Now in a recent interview that Caribbean governments “must equip themselves for more criminal immigrants coming back to the region soon and quit being laissez-faire about it.”
He said given the region’s dependence on tourism and the issues of crime and guns already being dealt with in many countries in the Caribbean, the addition of more criminal immigrants to the region could present a nightmare scenario.
The Caribbean has been battling with thousands of criminal and other deportees to the region since the 1996 immigration reforms and many have blamed crime in the region on criminal deportees who spent time in US jails and were then sent back to small countries unable to track them or police forces less savvy than the criminals.