For hundreds of thousands of TPS holders, their future is in jeopardy and the election provides an opportunity for permanent protection.
In a new op-ed in The Hill, José Palma makes a powerful case for voting in leaders who will protect the more than 300,000 TPS holders and 200,000 U.S. citizen children who are vulnerable to family separation or being forced to leave the U.S. beginning in March of next year. Deportation would impact hundreds of thousands of the American children of TPS holders, disrupt the economy, and harm recovery efforts in the midst of a pandemic. And there is urgency to taking action. Palma is co-founder of the Massachusetts TPS Committee and previously served as coordinator of the National TPS Alliance.
The article is excerpted below and can be read in full here:
On March 5, 2021, a terrifying possibility looms for more than 318,000 people living in the United States. Last month, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the White House’s plan to deport immigrants who received Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in the U.S. after fleeing conflicts and natural disasters in their home countries. Over decades, we have built careers and started businesses. We have raised 280,000 American children. We have made a new home and done it all with the government’s blessing. But in just four months, our lives could be upended.
If the current president is reelected, we’ll have two options: remain in the U.S as undocumented immigrants, living in the shadows at risk of deportation and stripped of protections and rights; or return to El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua, Sudan or other countries we haven’t seen in decades and which, in many cases, are impoverished and unsafe. Either way, our lives, our children and the American economy will suffer.
The cancellation of TPS would deeply impact local economies across the nation at a moment when our recovery requires every tax dollar.
…Approximately 130,000 TPS holders are essential workers, with 11,600 working in health care. It’s incredibly shortsighted to push us out of the country right now.
…I hope people understand the value we bring to our communities and state — and how ending TPS would ruin not just our lives, but our children’s.
Right now, our only hope is the upcoming election. We cannot vote, so we need our communities to stand up for us. Elect officials who see the value we offer the country and recognize the trauma that deportation would inflict on our children. The cruelty of that outcome is unimaginable, which is why we refuse to give up.