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Trump Administration Tells Thousands of Haitians They Must Leave the US
July 21 2018, 12:19 | Irvin Gilbert
People at an Immigration Rally
Justin Valas via Flickr
First signed into law by President George H.W. Bush in 1990, more than 320,000 people benefit from TPS, including almost 200,000 people from El Salvador.
The temporary status covers some 435,000 people from nine countries ravaged by natural disasters or war, who came to the USA legally or otherwise. Duke originally planned to extend TPS for Honduras, but was pressured by Kelly to expel them, according to the Washington Post. Florida has about 44,800 residents under TPS protection living in the state, including nearly 33,000 Haitian immigrants, many of whom make up the backbone of Central Florida's tourism industry. They have said their decisions on further extensions are made on the basis of whether the initial justification for the status still exists.
TPS status for an additional 200,000 Salvadorans, here since El Salvador was struck by a series of earthquakes in 2001, is also due to expire in early January. But if beneficiaries stay in the US without legal status after TPS ends, they will lose that coverage.
Yet our nation - especially my home state of Florida - has not only offered a helping hand to Haitians seeking refuge from these grave challenges, but also benefited significantly from their presence in and contributions to our country. They have been exempted from deportation under a 1990 law that allows them to legally remain if the executive branch determines that instability and precarious conditions exist in their countries as the result of natural disasters or armed conflict.
Haitians who have been in the United States under TPS have played a significant role in rebuilding their country. Failure to renew the TPS designation will weaken Haiti's economy and impede its ability to recover completely and improve its security. "For anyone that has been to Haiti in recent months, it is clear that the Administration's decision does not coincide with the risky reality on the ground".
A decision on 195,000 recipients from El Salvador is expected in January. Representative Illean Ros-Lehtinen took to Twitter Monday evening to share what she saw on the ground in Haiti after both disasters, writing that she "can personally attest that Haiti is not prepared to take back almost 60,000 TPS recipients under these hard and harsh conditions".
Dupuy said if someone came into the U.S.to sell drugs or commit terrorism, or got in trouble with the police, they should be deported. They argue that it is contrary to American values to force people to return to a country that is risky and unstable. Further details about this termination for TPS will appear in a Federal Register notice.
While Haiti is still simply unable to absorb a large number of returnees at this time, new leadership in that island country provides the United States with a renewed opportunity to empower the Haitian people to advance our shared principles of freedom and democracy and to ultimately rebuild a stronger and even more resilient Haiti. Thinking about the Haitian TPS population in Massachusetts, Healey said, "I think about the fear, I think about the anxiety and I think about how unnecessary all of this is, and it's why I stood up along with others in advocating for the extension of TPS".
Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., called the move by DHS "unconscionable" and urged the Trump administration to reconsider.
Days before the Nicaraguan and Honduran decisions were announced, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson informed Duke that the State Department assessed that TPS was no longer necessary for the Central Americans or Haitians.
Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who has made immigration enforcement a core part of his pitch in his run for governor, is criticizing his ally Donald Trump, charging that the White House failed a "big test" on immigration by moving too slowly to end special deportation protections for almost 60,000 Haitians.
The Times adds that some Haitian immigrants affected by this mandate have sought asylum in Quebec, Canada.