Adhikaar Urges Congress to Provide Permanent Protections for TPS Holders

प्रकाशित मिति : भाद्र २९, २०७७ सोमबार

Today the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals handed down a decision on Ramos v Nielsen, ruling 2-1 on the side of the Trump administration, and against the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) communities that brought the suit. The ruling affects more than 300,000 TPS holders from El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Sudan. It also opens the way for the termination of Nepal and Honduras TPS in Bhattarai v. Nielsen.

In the opinion posted today, the appellate court held that the district court which entered the preliminary injunction that blocked the termination of TPS, “abused its discretion” in concluding that the Plaintiffs presented “at least serious questions on the merits of their Equal Protection claim.” They further defended their denial of this claim by saying that there was no evidence that the racist statements of Trump and his administration were a direct motivation for the termination of TPS.  The Court did not address the claim citing a violation of the Administrative Procedure Act.

TPS allows 300,000 families protection from deportation and work permits to provide for their families safely in the United States. Since 2017, The Trump Administration has terminated TPS status for all but four out of the original thirteen countries that had active TPS protection in January 2017.

TPS holders across the country fought back after the terminations and effectively won preliminary injunctions in 2019 maintaining current protections until January 4, 2021, for El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Sudan. After the filing of a related case, the initial injunction was extended to cover TPS-holders from Honduras and Nepal (under Bhattarai v Nielsen).

Trump Administration challenged this bare minimum provision and the latest ruling from the ninth circuit appellate court affirmed Trump’s racist arguments today.

As the United States continues to face an onslaught of COVID-19 cases which now top 4,000,0000 and deaths reaching over 160,000, we need to secure the stability and health of all communities regardless of their background. TPS holders have been instrumental on the front lines by providing care in hospitals, and other essential industries.

The decision of the Ninth Circuit judges today to side with the government further enables the Trump administration’s continued and systematic destruction of programs that benefit Black and Brown immigrants; empowering law enforcement to continue dehumanizing, detaining, and ultimately mass deporting these communities.

“I have two children who were born here, a 13-year-old son and 9-year-old daughter. I’ve been living in this country for over 23 years. After I got TPS in 2015, I was able to take my children to visit Nepal for the first time in 2016. As wonderful as it was for us to be able to visit Nepal, we also realized that home for us, as a family, is the US. We belong here, and we cannot be separated. My children need me. If I lose TPS, I cannot imagine losing my job, health insurance for my family, and possibly being separated from my children. Congress must act to protect us now,” said Rajesh Thapa, a Nepali TPS holder and member of Adhikaar, an advocacy group that supports Nepali Americans.

“In addition to the 300,000 TPS holders who will be at risk of deportation, including nearly 15,000 Nepali TPS holders, the Trump administration has created a crisis for families including citizen children and communities who depend on TPS holders. TPS holders are essential workers, small business owners and serve as leaders in religious or community associations. TPS holders make up the fabric of their community, support our economy, and have lived decades in this country, with hopes of creating futures here. We now turn to Congress to pass legislation that will provide a pathway to permanent residency for all TPS holders,” Adhikaar said in a statement.

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