On Sunday, August 8, 2010 I was at Church (Church of God Christian Life Center of Boston) when my Pastor asked for the family to come on the Pulpet so they could pray for them, because immigration is going to send them back in Haiti. After the service, I talked briefly with my pastor and the family. On Monday, August 9, 2010 I went to Shriners Hospital to find out what was the reasoning behind that precipitated departure. When I arrived there, I talked to the Nurse Care Coordinator, on behalf of the family and I requested a ptickets for Haiti. I kept the President informed regarding the situation of the Garcon’s family. On August 16, 2010, Mr. Dieufort Fleurissaint and Myself met with the team. They were pretty nice. Meanwhile, I did receive a letter from him on August 13th,2010 stated that: “As of 8/18/10, he will not be able to provide any further support for housing, meals, daily living.
- I (Jean J. Vatelia) went to the Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) on August 10, 2010 to apply for Food Stamp/Cash advance; they told me that the family is not illegible for any benefits.
- On August 16, 2010, I went back to the Dudley Office and this time, I applied for housing through the DHCD (Department Housing and Community Development). For some reasons, they could not find Pierrela & Joisine in the system. I talked to the manager; She filled out the application for the family and asked me to come the next day.
- On August 17, 2010, I went to the DHCD office in Dudley, MA. After waiting for several hours, a case coordinator (Homeless Coordinator) checked their documents and told me that they are not qualified because they had a C4 Visa.
- The same day, I went to the Immigration Services Office and talked to the Supervisor; they btold me that they could not do anything for me. It is a state issue! I also talked to the District director, who mentioned that there is no such thing as a C4 Visa. Those people were paroled into the United States.
- On August 19, 2010, I set up an appointment through INFOPASS for the family at 11:45am. I saw an officer who took care of the recipients and sent them for fingerprints the same day.
- We received an interview appointment for August 30, 2010. Mr. Dieufort Fleurissaint went with me and interpreted for the family. At the end of the interview process, Lieselot Whitbeck, the Immigration Service Officer for Deferred Action asked for a Medical Letter which will describe what type of care is needed and weather or not the care she needs is available in Haiti. TAC had 14 days to provide additional evidence.
- On September 5, 2010, I attended a Haitian event organized by the organization Six & Counting in Brockton, Massachusetts. I met with Rep. Linda Dorcena Forry, explained to her the family situation. She asked to go to see her Legislative Aide, Cathy Auguste (617-722-2080), located at the State House Room 26.
- I went to see her on September 7, 2010 at the State House. I wrote a memo on behalf of TAC to disclose the medical information to the State Representative Linda Dorcena Forry in order to advocate on behalf of the family. She asked to give her 24hrs to find out how to approach this case.
- Soon enough, on September 8, 2010 I receive a call from the Codman Square Health Center Director, who was being contacted by the CEO to move forward with this case. She has me to come and meet with Dr. Philip Severin, Medical Director.
- On September 9, 2010; I picked them up at the Constitution Inn in Charlestown, Massachusetts and brought them to the appointment. After examination, he (Dr. Severin) wrote the medical letter (617-825-9660 x8263).
- When I picked them up on September 9, 2010 from the Constitution Inn in that morning, they brought all their stuff with them because Shriners Hospital was not able to assist them any further in term of shelter. On that day, I talked to Rep. Linda Dorcena Forry’s office who referred me toMegan Delan (head of homelessness for the city of boston) who herself referred me to the Emergency Shelter Division who contacted TRAVEL AID which is an organization hired by the City of Boston to shelter homeless people. Through that organization, I had a one time stay at Weston Inn on Mass Ave.
- On Friday, September 10, 2010, I went to see Ellen Nicole at City Hall; she finds a way to approve them for one week in a motel on route 2. The family stayed there for a full week till September 17, 2010. All the TAC members brought them food almost everyday. I took the decision to bring them over my mom’s house because I did not have a choice.
- Monday, September 13, 2010, the day before the deadline, Mr. Dieufort Fleurissaint, the President of True Alliance Center hand delivered the document Ms. Lieselot Whitbeck.
- On Saturday, September 18, 2010, TAC board had a meeting at the Headquarters; then, I informed them that the family is being relocated to my mom’s house for a period of THREE WEEKS. That day, Mr. Dieufort Fleurissaint informed that he received the SNAP approval letter for the family.
- On Monday, September 20, 2010, I talked to Cathy Auguste in Rep Linda Dorcena Forry who put me in contact with the DHCD)] who investigated through her department to find out why she was not qualified for housing. The Lawyers from DHCD said no that they were not qualified because they usually followed DTA steps. She had her department contacted DTA to get to the bottom of the problem. They were not successful.
- Meanwhile, I received an email from Codman Square Health Center Care Coordinator, for Pierrela Garcon appointments scheduled for Occupational Therapy & Physical Therapy on 10/6/2010 @ 12:00pm and 2:30pm respectively at Spaulding Rehab Center (781-843-1145), and also scheduled for Orthopedic Surgery on 10/07/2010 at 8:00am w/Dr. Brown at BMC (617-638-8000)
- She called on October 5, 2010 and informed that he had an interesting conversation with Emel Hadzipasic from the OIR (Office of Immigrants and Refugees) who suggested that those people are qualified under Haitian Entrants. In that conversation, Mrs. Bolling discovered that this family is better off with the Humanitarian Paroled status than pursuing Deferred Action. Besides, I also informed her that her masshealth was about to be expired. We had a conference with Codman Square Health Center, talked to Ebony Benson (617-822-8105) who found out that the policy will be expired by the end of October.
- I filled the applications and mailed them to MASSHEALTH office on October 18, 2010
- 19. On October 6, 2010, Mrs. Bolling and I had a conference with Emel Hadzipasic and Vivie Hengst from OIR’s office regarding the family. During the conference, both lawyers requested all the documents, I-94’s, copy of the denial document from DTA, the letter from Codman, and a copy of the SNAP card. I provided immediately to them those documents to the DHCD and the OIR lawyers.
- The same day Mrs. Bolling had another conference call, but this time it was with the RIM (Refugee Immigration Ministry) located on 142 Pleasant Street in Malden, MA 02148, TEL: 781-322-1017. We talked to Christine Kalangwa (781-322-1011 x306) who only works on Wednesday referred us to a gentleman . This organization could give her food stamp, cash advance and other benefits.
- On October 13, 2010 a friend of mine brought Joisine Alce Garcon to the RIM office. She signed the client rights and responsibilities.
- On Monday, October 18, 2010, I forwarded her I-94 document to Samy who was going to check with DTA for eligibility.
- On Friday, October 22, 2010, Mrs. Bolling left a voicemail to Emel requesting an update regarding the case
- On Tuesday, October 26, 2010, Emel responded that she did receive the message.
- Vivie Hengst (OIR) sent an email to the DTA requesting an explanation regarding the food stamp termination notice. She continued to send an email to the USCIS regarding the request of an extension of the Humanitarian Paroled Status which will be expired on December 4, 2010 next month.
- On October 29, 2010, Vivie Hengst called me and told me that Tim O’reilly is asking for two additional letters, one from the Spaulding Rehab Centerand the other one from Mass General Hospital.
- On November 4, 2010, I contacted Spaulding Rehab Center for a follow up on the appointment that was not successful due to lack of documentations from Codman. She said that they have not received any documents still from Codman. I proceeded to call the Care Coordinator of the client Ms. Jackie Barbosa who stated that there was a confusion and also Dr. Severin did not mention the words Occupational or Physical Therapy in the documents. I also asked her about to brief me about what happened at the Boston Medical Center. She assured me that she was going to contact Dr. Severin, scheduled an appointment through Spaulding and also the Behavorial Health Care.
- The same day I received a phone call from Vivie Hengst and asked me to bring the family to DTA Dudley office and asked to speak with Jon O'Neil
- They denied their application for benefits because they don’t consider them as Haitian entrants. I called Vivie Hengst to inform her about the bad news.
- I have talked to Jackie Barbosa (Manage Care Coordinator at Codman Square), her phone number 617-822-8101, to schedule an appointment for Pierrela which she schedules for December 6, 2010 at 1:45pm with her Primary Physician, Dominique Entzminger, PA.
- She also scheduled Pierrela Garcon to go and see a Physical Therapist at Tufts Medical Center, located at 800 Washington Street on November 17, 2010 at 11:40am. Mr. Hodson Beauplant brought the Family to that hospital to see Dr. Patrick Brennan.
- After examination, the diagnosis revealed that she needs several intense Occupational Therapy sessions, which needed to be scheduled when we (TAC) fixed her health insurance card which expired also as her immigration document on DECEMBER 4, 2010
- December 8, 2010: ORI wrote an email to Mr. Timothy O’reilly, temp acting District Direct, USCIS regarding Joisine & Pierrela and asked them to renew their Humanitarian Status.
- USCIS asked TAC to provide another letter from Codman Square Health Center explaining the reasons why Pierrela needed to stay in the US for treatment. Could they find the same treatment in Haiti?
- December 16, 2010, I sent an email to Patricia Hao (Assistant of Dr. Severin) to give an overview about the family.
- December 17, 2010, we forwarded to USCIS, a Harship letter explaining the family situation and also a Medical letter from the Chief Medical at Codman (Dr. Philip Severin)
- In JANUARY 2011, right after the earthquake anniversary, USCIS renewed their Humanitarian Status for another till December 4, 2011.
- Meanwhile, the family continued to live over my mom & other people’s house while TAC continued to advocate on their behalf for Housing benefits.
- DTA renew their EA benefits after they have the new status in January.
- On JUNE 8, 2011, I went with the family at DTA in Dudley, they denied the case again. Then, I contacted Darrell LeMarr (DHCP Deputy for Shelter) to explain to him about this Haitian family situations. He wrote an email to the head of DTA at Dudley and asked me to go back the next day.
- On June 9, 2011, I went back to DTA who approved this time their application for family shelter. While waiting for the one month investigation; they sent them to HOMESTEAD STUDIO SUITES on Third Ave in Waltham, MA 02451, Tel: 781-890-1330.
- On June 10, 2011, I brought the family to the Hotel; they stayed there for a period of 14 days.
- On June 24, 2011, They relocated into a family shelter (housing style) on 495 Huntington Ave, Hyde Park, MA.
- On September 19, 2011, Mr. Dieufort Fleurissaint went to Boston Public School Headquater in Hyde Park to enroll Pierrela Garcon into School. They did not take care because of Immunization status.
- On September 20, 2011, Mr. Dieufort Fleurissaint brought Pierrela Garcon to Codman Square
- On September 23, 2011, Mr. Dieufort Fleurissaint brought to USCIS Office to do fingerprints for their TPS cards.
- Joisine Alce is going to School at : The Parish of Christ Church (English 6hrs/wk); Saint Angela Catholic Church (English/Creole classes 6hrs/wk)
- Pierrela’s School: Newcomers Academy, 100 Maxwell Street, Dorchester, MA 02121 (TEL: 617-635-9373).
- Humanitarian Status expired on December 4, 2011; we will wait to see if that will not affect her benefits.
- On December 15, 2011, she signed document for permanent housing at Travelers Agency Family Services with her case manager Klaudia Valencia which was replaced by Adele, the new case manager.
- On Saturday 17, 2011, I brought Joisine Social Security Card which will give her access to employment.
- On December 18, 2011, the City of Boston invited the family to their Christmas Party where they gave Pierrela a gift certificate for an MP3.
- On December 20, 2011, the housing office paid a visit to Joisine’s apartment and found it wide open and no one was there at that time. That was a serious violation, said the case manager.
- Next day, on December 21, 2011 they asked Joisine to come to their office to explain why and have her sign some documents.
This is the end of the Garcon’s family history in the United Stated assisted by True Alliance Center, Inc.
Prepared by: Jean Jourdain Vatelia