The decision this week to end Temporary Protected Status for 200,000 Salvadoran immigrants who have lived in the United States for many years -- even decades -- would leave them with no legal status.
This decision comes following the Trump administration's decisions to end TPS for Haitians and Nicaraguans and may indicate similar decisions lie in store for Hondurans and for others.
Temporary Protected Status is a protection from deportation and authorization to live and work legally for nationals of countries that have suffered from war, epidemics, or natural disasters. TPS typically includes two-year protections, but it was extended by previous administrations due to conditions in those countries. But now the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) claims that TPS depends on the original reason for designation, not current conditions.
In the case of El Salvador, a serious of earthquakes led to the TPS designation in 2001. The administration says earthquake-related problems have been sufficiently resolved to terminate the protections. This view does not take into consideration current violence and economic conditions in El Salvador nor how ingrained in U.S. culture and society these Salvadorans have become. TPS protectees have until September 9, 2019 to find a different way to stay in the United States or prepare to leave, unless Congress acts to extend deportation protection.
Please call your congressional representative and senators (202 - 224 - 3121) and ask them to sign onto H.R.4253 - American Promise Act of 2017, introduced by Nydia Velasquez of New York, and S.2144 - SECURE Act introduced by Senators Van Hollen and Cardin of Maryland. Both pieces of legislation would grant further protection to the hundreds of thousands of people at risk of deportation due to the termination of TPS.