Blog post origional posted 11/20/2017 and has been updated to reflect the Trump administration’s decision.
The Trump administration has announced 59,000 Haitians now have 18 months to leave the United States. Haitians who face deportation will be sent back to dire conditions, including lack of housing, clean water, inadequate health services and a high unemployment rate. Failure to renew the TPS designation may further weaken Haiti’s economy and hinder its progress to recovery.
Temporary Protected Status, or TPS, is a designation by the Department of Homeland Security specific to foreign countries meeting certain criteria. A country must be involved in ongoing armed conflict, an environmental disaster or epidemic, or otherwise determined extraordinary but temporary conditions.
Haiti falls into the second category of TPS designation, having both suffered the effects of Hurricane Matthew, a cholera epidemic affecting 800,000 people, with a death count of close to 10,000.
Due to the enacted TPS, 59,000 Haitian nationals currently reside in the United States. Additional countries with TPS status includes Honduras, and did include Nicaragua. On November 6, The Department of Homeland Security ended TPS Nicaragua, ending the legal authorization for over five thousand Nicaraguans to live and work in the United States. Whether Honduras’ TPS designation will continue is unknown.
This comes in spite of support from 100 members of Congress against terminating Temporary Protective Status for these countries, including Senator Marco Rubio, who released a statement earlier this month. The Trump administration is expected to continue its harsh anti-immigration policy, and further TPS designations will likely end within the next two years.
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