Published: Tue, January 09, 2018
Economy | By Shawn Conner

Trump declares he's deporting 200000 Salvadoran immigrants from US

Trump declares he's deporting 200000 Salvadoran immigrants from US

More specifically, the Homeland Security Department is ending the special legal protections that the immigrants have had since 2001 under the Temporary Protected Status program.

In 2016, El Salvador had the highest homicide rate in the Western Hemisphere, with 81.2 deaths per 100,000 people, followed by Venezuela and Honduras.

Immigrant advocates, Salvadoran government officials and many others had implored Nielsen to extend the TPS designation, citing the country's horrific gang violence and the potentially destabilizing effect of so many people being sent home.

-Around 200,000 Salvadorans allowed to live in the United States since 2001 after earthquakes in El Salvador must leave the country in 2019, USA officials said on Monday, marking the Trump administration's latest move to tighten immigration law enforcement.

The move presents thousands of Salvadorans on Long Island with a crucial decision - whether to prepare to leave, seek another form of lawful residency or fall into illegal status as of the deadline announced by the government, September 9, 2019.

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The move is sure to please immigration groups advocating for lower levels of immigration who have argued that the TPS program, created by Congress in 1990, was always meant to be a short-term fix but has been abused by repeated extensions.

Salvadorans, who were granted TPS after a series of earthquakes in their Central American homeland in 2001, not only made up the largest immigrant group under TPS, but they constitute the largest immigrant community on Long Island. "Congress has a responsibility to act in the best interest of our nation by legislating a permanent solution that allows current TPS holders to contribute fully without fear of deportation".

The Department of Homeland Security, which administers TPS, did not respond to a request for comment.

Another group unhappy with the decision is Amnesty International USA, whose Marselha Gonçalves Margerin, advocacy director for the Americas, called the TPS termination "a devastating betrayal for thousands of families who arrived at the United States seeking safety as well as their US citizen children".

The U.S. created Temporary Protected Status in 1990 to provide a safe haven from countries affected by earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, war and other disasters, and it now shields almost 320,000 people from 10 countries.

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Nielsen met recently with the El Salvador's foreign minister and US ambassador, and spoke with President Salvador Sanchez Ceren, according to the announcement sent to lawmakers.

To maintain their work authorization, TPS immigrants pay hundreds of dollars in fees for permits every 18 months. There are almost 440,000 beneficiaries from the 10 countries, including 263,000 from El Salvador, but many have obtained legal status other ways.

Last year, Homeland Security announced an end to temporary protections for Nicaraguans and Haitians.

Acting Secretary Elaine Duke, however, extended protections for more than 80,000 Hondurans for six months because she said she was unable to reach a decision about whether conditions in that country had improved enough to terminate the protected status.

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