The Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns is deeply disappointed in the Trump administration’s decision on May 4, 2018 not to extend protection for Hondurans in the United State under the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program. We call on Congress to step in immediately and create a permanent solution for Honduran TPS holders.
TPS allows immigrants from a short list of countries to live and work in the United States due to extraordinary circumstances in their countries of origin, such as war or natural disaster. Honduras received its TPS designation in 1998, in the wake of Hurricane Mitch. Life in Honduras has been difficult as the country recovers from that disaster and disasters since – and has only grown more difficult since the disastrous presidential election last November.
To forcibly deport or drive into the shadows 57,000 Hondurans who are legally living, working and raising children in the United States under Temporary Protected Status is a grave injustice. The cruelty of ending TPS for this vulnerable population at this time of serious political and social crisis in Honduras violates our values as people of faith and betrays the best and most traditional values of the United States.
This is the sixth time the Trump administration has terminated TPS for legal immigrants despite its obligation under the law to consider whether the receiving countries can handle the safe return of tens of thousands of people.
Honduras today is not prepared to meet that test for the 57,000 people who rely upon TPS.
Photo: Street art of murdered indigenous environmental rights activist Berta Caceres in Tegucigalpa, Honduras available via Pixabay.