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Catholic Groups Decry End Of Immigration Protection For Salvadorans

13 January 2018, 03:12 | Erica Roy

Catholic Groups Decry End Of Immigration Protection For Salvadorans

Vatican newspaper says Trump comments ‘harsh offensive

After ending Temporary Protected Status in late 2017 for Haitians and Nicaraguans, the White House announced last Monday it will end TPS for Salvadorans, the largest group of TPS recipients. "There is now a travel advisory from the government, warning Americans not to travel to El Salvador". But the usual suspects in the permanent Gang of Amnesty - identity-politics Democrats, Big Business Republicans, anti-rule of law activists and sovereignty-sabotaging pundits - condemned the Trump administration's announcement this week with a heaping dose of hyperbole.

Has the Trump administration ended the status for other countries? How about I force my way into Mr. Giridharadas' residence uninvited and demand to stay for at least 17 years under the guise of seeking "temporary" shelter. The erosion of TPS parallels Trump's cancellation of the DACA program protecting undocumented youth-and comes as he ramps up deportation raids and mass arrests.

Faced with this phenomenon, the Canadian Minister of Immigration, Ahmed Hussen, said in a press conference on Tuesday that the government has put a preventive plan in place, in case the Salvadoran citizens decide to take similar measures.

The Temporary Protected Status offered a safe haven for people from countries affected by a variety of natural disasters. Some 88 percent of all TPS cardholders, who must pay $500-$700 every six months to renew their "blue cards", work, with one-third of them in construction. The families typically include hard-working parents and children who are U.S. citizens because they were born in the States. "It's a temporary program", acknowledges the aspiring law student.

Since President George H.W. Bush signed the Immigration Act of 1990 into law, the U.S. government has allowed immigrants from certain countries affected by armed conflict, environmental disaster, or other extraordinary conditions to reside and work legally in the United States until it is safe for them to return home. How is that in the United States' interest? They too may well have children born here, may well have mortgages or a business, and may well be sending money home.

While the Velascos will still fight to gain support for bills such as the one drafted by senators Diane Feinstein, Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen that call for a pathway to residency for TPS holders, the family is also preparing for the worst.

Since its inception, 12 other countries have enjoyed TPS, and have since had their status terminated.

There were two reasons for granting TPS: First, and most immediately, the Salvadoran economy would not have absorbed all those displaced had we deported them in the years after the earthquakes. Without TPS, he says, his sisters would face the impossible choice of splitting the family to return, or risking living without legal status in the United States. "We know we don't have a country that is expecting us - that can hold us".


Los Angeles Unified, where thousands of Salvadoran students are enrolled, tried to reassure students, families and staff on Wednesday. One option her family is considering is leaving her in charge of her younger siblings when their parents move, Rivera said. He anxious the decision could lead to bigger problems in El Salvador. During and after that war, hundreds of thousands of Salvadorans came to the United States, many crossing the border illegally and others overstaying their visas. They deserve more than having their countries referred to as shitholes.

The tepid approach to the US announcement came after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sent out a tweet previous year stating Canada's welcoming stance on refugees and asylum seekers. The George W. Bush administration responded with compassion, allowing more than 200,000 Salvadorans who happened at that moment to be in the U.S. That's a long time to just put life on hold, so majority haven't.

Many Haitians sought asylum in Canada based on expectations that they would easily be granted refugee status, the government said, leading lawmakers to reach out to diaspora communities to dispel such misinformation.

"We are not being complacent", he said.

The deepest sense of insecurity surrounding the TPS community now stems from the administration's ignorance of a fundamental reality: The longer people stay, the deeper their American roots grow.

"The exit of so many compatriots from the United States would be a social bomb that will immediately explode in Honduras", analyst Raul Pineda Alvarado said.

Indeed, TPS turned into TINO: Temporary in Name Only.

Michelle Chen is a contributing writer at In These Times and The Nation, a contributing editor at Dissent and a co-producer of the "Belabored" podcast.



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