Sep 06 2019
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Congressman Brian Mast (FL-18) today led a bipartisan letter to President Donald Trump calling for the administration to expedite, waive or suspend certain visa requirements for citizens of the Bahamas affected by Hurricane Dorian who are seeking shelter with relatives in the United States.
Today’s letter is also signed by Representatives Stephanie Murphy (FL-07), Ted Deutch (FL-22), Mario Diaz-Balart (FL-25), Francis Rooney (FL-19), John Rutherford (FL-04), Charlie Crist (FL-13), Lois Frankel (FL-21), Al Lawson (FL-05), Matt Gaetz (FL-01), Kathy Castor (FL-14), Bill Posey (FL-08), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23), Vern Buchanan (FL-16), Alcee Hastings (FL-20), Michael Waltz (FL-06), Darren Soto (FL-09) and Val Demmings (FL-10).
The full letter is below and attached:
September 6, 2019
President Donald Trump
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President:
In the aftermath of the catastrophic Category 5 Hurricane Dorian, which battered the Bahamas for more than two days with high winds, heavy rain, and life-threatening storm surges, we respectfully urge your administration to expedite, waive, or suspend certain visa requirements for citizens of the Bahamas affected by the storm who are seeking shelter with relatives in the United States.
The United States and the Bahamas share a strong bilateral relationship with historically close economic ties and strong cooperation on reducing crime and mitigating migration issues. With the closest island less than 50 miles off the coast of Florida, there are approximately 20,000 Bahamians living in South Florida. This devastating hurricane has left so many without shelter, food, and clean water. As the Commonwealth of the Bahamas begins relief efforts, the United States government should help ensure that those who were left with nothing can easily seek shelter with their families in the United States. With the death toll continuing to rise, Floridians stand ready to assist our ally in the wake of this disaster.
Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter and we look forward to working with your administration to assist the people of the Bahamas in the aftermath of this devastating hurricane.
Member of Congress
- (499.3 KBs)