Unconscionable to Not Redesignate Yemen, Home to One of World’s Worst Humanitarian Crises, for TPS Protection

Courtney Holsworth, Balestra Media

For Immediate Release: July 5, 2018
Contact: Courtney Holsworth, courtney@balestramedia.com, (989) 572-8162

Unconscionable to Not Redesignate Yemen, Home to One of World’s Worst Humanitarian Crises, for TPS Protection, Says Immigrant Legal Resource Center

Today, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) extended the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designation for Yemen which would afford continued protection from deportation to over 1,000 Yemeni TPS holders. DHS did not, however, redesignate TPS, leaving Yemenis who arrived to the United States after January 4, 2017, vulnerable to deportation.

Said Amanda Baran, consultant to the Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC):

“We are relieved that the Department of Homeland Security extended TPS protection for the more than one thousand Yemenis living and working in our communities, but without a redesignation to accompany it, many people will be vulnerable to deportation back to a country that is home to one of the worst humanitarian crises the world has ever seen.

“It is unconscionable that this Administration is going to abdicate our country’s moral responsibility and promise of refuge it made to people seeking safety. The conditions in Yemen are so dire that our own Department of State issued a travel advisory in January 2018, stating unequivocally that “[n]o part of Yemen is safe from violence.” The United Nations has found that 18 million Yemenis are food insecure, millions do not have access to drinking water, and cholera is rampant. Last month, more than thirty former national security officials sent a letter to DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo advocating for an extension and redesignation of TPS for Yemenis. In the face of such evidence, this decision highlights the profound absence of humanity, empathy, and decency in this Administration’s decision-making.

“We urge Congress to act immediately and pass the American Promise Act of 2017 introduced by Rep. Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY) and the SECURE Act introduced by Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-MD). Both of these bills will grant TPS beneficiaries from all 13 participating countries access to legal permanent residency.”

ILRC urges legal practitioners to review its Practice Alert on Ramirez v. Brown for more information on how to help TPS holders living in certain parts of the U.S. (the jurisdictions covered by the United States Court of Appeals for the 9th and 6th Circuits) that may be eligible to pursue options to adjust their status.

For interviews with Immigrant Legal Resource Center, please contact Courtney Holsworth at courtney@balestramedia.com or (989) 572-8162.


About the Immigrant Legal Resource Center

The Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC) is a national nonprofit that works with immigrants, community organizations, legal professionals, and policymakers to build a democratic society that values diversity and the rights of all people. Through community education programs, legal training & technical assistance, and policy development & advocacy, the ILRC’s mission is to protect and defend the fundamental rights of immigrant families and communities. www.ilrc.org