Local January 14, 2013 | 7:18 am

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Haitian migrants get work permits in Dominican Republic

Santo Domingo.- The Immigration Agency on Sunday began regulating foreign laborers by issuing the first 210 cards for seasonal workers, to help them travel without inconvenience and pay into the social security system.

Immigration director Jose Ricardo Taveras said the Dominican health system spends around six billion pesos a year on services for foreigners, despite that they work in the country.

He said he card features the owner’s signature, photo and fingerprints. "In addition, each was a subjected to a background check through Interpol, the National Investigations Department (DNI), and the National Drugs Control Agency (DNCD)."

Taveras told the Haitians present, "with this document you may go to Haiti to have a coffee and be back in the country in the afternoon without any problem or the fear of being stopped by a soldier."

Cy Winter, head of the International Organization of Migrations (IOM) Delegation in the Dominican Republic, said the implementation of theregulation "is a key step for the support of dignity of labor immigrants of the Dominican Republic, specifically Haitians."

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