Trump Administration Announces End of TPS For Hondurans



In January, the Trump administration ended TPS classification for some 200,000 Salvadorans, who had been allowed to live and work in the United States since 2001.

Jeanne Atkinson, executive director of the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, said the Trump administration attempted to paint a picture that it had "no choice but to terminate TPS", suggesting that past administrations that extended the protected status for Hondurans had not properly applied the law.

Groups that favor limited immigration praised the administration's decision, saying the effects of Hurricane Mitch are long-gone. A year earlier, Hurricane Mitch had slammed into that Central American nation, killing thousands and creating a humanitarian crisis. The Central American country was one of a few that was given the benefit of the TPS after natural disasters. Administration officials have argued TPS decisions must be based exclusively on whether the country conditions have improved with regard to the situations that led to the protections in the first place ― in the case of Honduras and El Salvador, devastation caused by a hurricane in 1998.

Likewise, and according to the Washington Post, the government of Donald Trump would not be considering the current conditions of the country that "remains one of the most violent countries in the world, and has been involved in political instability since presidential elections a year ago whose legitimacy was rejected by the Organization of American States and other global observers". They've been given deadlines starting in November for Sudan and throughout 2019 for the other countries to leave, or if possible, gain legal status.

Most of the other countries that have come up for TPS review have had the status terminated, except for Syria, which is in the midst of a devastating war. Immigrants with TPS receive deportation protection, work authorization, and can even get driver's licenses.

More than 86,000 Hondurans received TPS protections after the hurricane, and the latest government estimates show that about 50,000 still depend on the designation to remain in the United States. The decision affects almost 60,000 Hondurans who are living and working in the United States.

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Mr. Trump, his opponents argue, is effectively adding tens if not hundreds of thousands of people to the ranks of those in the US without legal status.

Many Hondurans were among the asylum-seekers crossing through Mexico in a caravan. In 2016, Honduras had one of the highest murder rates in the world with more than 5,000 murders, at a rate of 59 murders per 100,000 people. At the time, DHS Acting Secretary said that additional time was needed to assess conditions in Honduras due to a "lack of definitive information regarding conditions on the ground compared to pre-Hurricane Mitch".

The Trump administration announced Friday that it is ending special immigration protections granted for about 57,000 Hondurans.

The Honduran government "deeply" lamented TPS termination.

"We've demonstrated that we're closely aligned with this country", Gerardo Simon, the consul general of the Honduran Consulate in Miami, told USA Today last month.

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