U.S. Warns Darker-Skinned Americans May Be Profiled in DR

U.S. Embassy Warns Darker-Skinned Americans May Be Profiled, Detained in the Dominican Republic

The United States has issued an alert for darker-skinned Americans visiting the Dominican Republic, warning that they might be profiled and wrongfully detained if mistaken for Haitians.

A crackdown on Haitian immigrants has led DR officials to approach anyone in the country who look to be of Haitian descent. This means all persons with melanated skin are at risk of being confronted by police, according to the U.S. embassy. According to the agency, which sent out the notice on Saturday, November 19th, those detained are locked in “overcrowded detention centers” with little or no access to food and restrooms.

However, Dominican officials fired back at the embassy, calling its advisory “manifestly unfounded, untimely.” They pointed out their long-standing relationship with the U.S., reiterating that the government would never purposefully target visitors for their skin color.

The country has been called out for some time regarding the mass deportations of Haitians. A new report found that hundreds of Haitian children were expelled from the Dominican Republic without their parents. Videos have surfaced showing officers brutalizing Haitians since President Louis Abinader launched an aggressive initiative to purge the county of anyone illegally living in DR.

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Turk, pleaded to suspend deportations of Haitians, noting the humanitarian crises they’re currently facing in the embattled country. Haiti remains in turmoil, with increased gang violence, a cholera outbreak, and continued unrest following the murder of president Jovenel Moïse in July 2021. Yet, the Dominican Republic has vowed to send anyone back to the country who arrives without proper documentation and without plans to seek legal residency.

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  1. If this is true, how is profiling in DR different from profiling in the US?

  2. I was profiled twice today in San Juan DR and have the bus attendant admitting that he profiled me because of my skin color being dark on video. The first incident we had to left the bus because they said my US passport was fake. The second bus they did the same until someone stepped in. Both actions were immediately after entering the bus.

    It is sad to be profiled by other brown people in a country I USED to love. I cried all the back to Santo Domingo.

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