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Nearly 300 organizations have signed a letter to President Obama today urging his administration to grant some Central American refugees currently in the US temporary immigration relief.
The organizations, ranging from immigrant, humanitarian, civil rights, labor rights, to faith-based groups, are asking the Administration to grant Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to refugees from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras in light of escalating violence in those countries.
“These three countries warrant TPS designation in light of the dramatically escalating violence that has precipitated a humanitarian crisis of refugees fleeing the Northern Triangle countries,” states the letter.
“TPS was created by Congress with the passage of the Immigration Act of 1990 to address gaps in U.S. immigration policy and regularize the process by which our government accommodated those gaps.”
“Congress understood that a stay of deportation and employment authorization are necessary for nationals who are already in the United States but who cannot be deported safely due to temporary conditions in their home countries.”
According to a press release from the National Immigrant Justice Center, more than 17,000 people were murdered in 2015 in the “Northern Triangle countries,” with El Salvador — a nation with a population smaller than New York City — now ranking as the murder capital of the world.