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Trump administration plans to end protected status for about 60000 Haitian immigrants

25 November 2017

Earlier this week, a Trump administration official said acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke had determined the "extraordinary temporary conditions" in Haiti that justified the temporary immigration status "had sufficiently improved". For many years, renewing TPS status was seen as an obscure bureaucratic matter.

Amanda Baran, policy consultant at the Immigrant Legal Resource Center, called the termination of the status a "heartless decision" and said the Trump administration has no plan in place for the USA -born children who may now lose their Haitian parents and caregivers to deportation. That means that nearly 5,000 Haitians living in MA and almost 60,000 Haitians across the country could be affected.

As they did in announcing the Nicaragua decision, officials once again invited Congress to pass a law that would create a permanent solution for the people who have received temporary status - many of whom have been in the country for a decade or more.

Median household income was $50,000 for Salvadorans, $40,000 for Hondurans, and $45,000 for Haitians. It's usually renewed in 6 to 18-month intervals. "The proper avenue for affecting a change is Congress", the official added.

"Since the 2010 quake, the number of displaced people in Haiti has decreased by 97 percent", said Duke. The formerly protected immigrants have about a year to leave the U.S.

The Service Employees International Union estimates that those covered by TPS, including Haitians and many Central Americans, have 270,000 US -born children and thousands of American grandchildren.

Approximately 46,000 Haitians were allowed to enter the USA and work without fear of deportation, according to the Pew Research Center.

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The group called on Congress to change the law to allow immigrants now covered by temporary status to stay.

Members of the Baltimore-area Haitian group Komite Ayiti - Haitian Creole for "Haiti Committee" - are anxious about themselves and friends and relatives, President Garry Bienaime said.

"I wanted to come here for a better life". Silias, 41, who now works as a home health worker, says she has an application for political asylum.

"Based on all available information, including recommendations received as part of an inter-agency consultation process, Acting Secretary Duke determined that those extraordinary but temporary conditions caused by the 2010 natural disaster no longer exist".

At least 60 days before TPS is set to expire, the Homeland Security secretary must review the conditions for the status designation and decide if protection is still warranted. Still pending is a decision about the fate of more than 212,000 people from El Salvador, by far the largest group.

Democrats are also threatening to hold up the federal 2018 budget unless the GOP and President Donald Trump agree to provide a no-strings amnesty for at least 3 million so-called "Dreamer" illegal immigrants - including the 690,000 DACA beneficiaries - plus the 350,000 TPS holders.

Since the program was established in 1990, the US has granted protections to foreign nationals for a variety of reasons, including ongoing armed conflicts, environmental disasters such as earthquakes or hurricanes, and epidemics.

Trump administration plans to end protected status for about 60000 Haitian immigrants