A recording of today’s call is available here.
In response to the news that Temporary Protected Status, or TPS, for Haitians living in the United States has been terminated, faith voices and advocates gathered on a call to denounce the decision and call on Congress to enact a permanent legislative solution for TPS holders to protect them from being returned to countries, like Haiti, that are unable to safely receive them.
Jonathan Jayes-Green, Co-founder, UndocuBlack Network, said:
This decision to end legal protection to close to 60,000 Haitians immigrants is a continuation of the concerted war on Black people this administration has escalated. This decision is heartless, inhumane but our community’s fighting spirit will prevail.
Patrice Lawrence, National Policy and Advocacy Coordinator, UndocuBlack Network, said:
It is sad to see that what we were warning about and we suspected has come true. Ending TPS for Haiti was an unconscionable thing to do. It is up to Congress to act and pass the Secure Act and the American Promise Act so that TPS holders don’t have to shake up their lives.
Nana Brantuo, Policy Manager, Black Alliance for Just Immigration, said:
So far this year, we have seen the termination of TPS for Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Nicaragua, and now Haiti. The decisions to terminate TPS for all of these countries have not only been rooted in xenophobia, but they have been unprincipled – clearly averting from protocol and statute outlined by our nation’s laws and policies that specify careful, country assessment before decisions are to be made. TPS holders deserve so much more than what our Administration gives. The onus is now on Congress to enact legislation that affirms what TPS holders already are…permanent residents of the United States.
Holden Pierre, TPS Holder, Haitian Association United, said:
America is all I know. I have younger siblings here who depend on me both financially and emotionally. What will happen to my young siblings? My mother works tirelessly and was able to buy a house in Milton. What will happen to her property? We need to push for a permanent solution and hold Congress accountable. This is beyond immigration: this is about keeping people together. We must press forward.
Donna Norton, Executive Vice President, MomsRising, said:
The Department of Homeland Security cruelly targeted hard-working immigrant families last night by once again terminating Temporary Protected Status (TPS), this time for more than 50,000 Haitians. This is a heartless move that will tear apart families, cause unnecessary turmoil in our communities and damage our economy. This decision is callous, unprincipled and wrong. We intend to organize to build support for a permanent legislative solution, and to urge our elected leaders to make the right choice — to protect immigrants, not send them away.
Lys Isma, TPS Holder, student at FIU, member of UndocuBlack Network, said:
I am a TPS holder. I have had TPS since I was 15 years old and my family and I came here to Miami Florida when I was 9 months old. I am disappointed by this decision, but I can’t say I’m shocked. There is opportunity to make things better, here, though; we need permanent legislation and long-term permanent residency. Migration is a fundamental human right; we have the rights to food, water, and safe communities. These are rights that we are owed and not rights we should be begging for. Where you live should not determine if you live.
Greisa Martinez, DACA-recipient and Advocacy Director, United We Dream, said:
Congress must act this year to protect Haitian immigrants as well as others with TPS through a permanent legislative solution. We will continue to defend our community from deportation and fight to keep immigrant families together.