Extension and/or redesignation of TPS for Haiti: Biden administration to make decision by June 4

Emmanuel Paul
Emmanuel Paul - Journalist/ Storyteller

Extension and/or Redesignation of TPS for Haiti: The Biden Administration to Make Decision Before June 4th

Discussions are currently underway within the Biden administration regarding the extension and possible redesignation of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haitians in irregular situations in the United States.

According to officials from the Biden administration, a decision will be made before June 4th.

The Temporary Protected Status for Haiti is set to expire next August.

The decision to terminate or extend it must be made before June 4, 2024. This decision will be based on the current situation in Haiti, according to government officials during an online meeting with members of the Haitian diaspora this Tuesday.

The statement from Biden administration officials comes about a month after members of Congress sent a letter to President Biden advocating for the redesignation and extension of Temporary Protected Status for Haitians in the United States.

In this open letter dated March 18, 2024, a group of nearly 70 lawmakers, led by Representatives Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, Yvette Clarke of New York, and Sheila Sherfilus McCormick of Florida, pleaded for the extension and redesignation of Temporary Protected Status for Haitians in irregular situations in the United States.

“These two steps are necessary to ensure that the United States does not send Haitian nationals back to a government incapable of protecting its citizens – often exposing them to repression and violence – and to gangs that cruelly brutalize residents and operate without restriction,” wrote the lawmakers.

“Due to the rapidly escalating gang violence in Haiti, the uncertain political future following Prime Minister Henry’s resignation announcement, the lack of accountability for human rights violations and abuses by the current government, we urge you to extend and redesignate TPS for Haiti and to use your discretionary power to stop deportation flights to the country,” according to the signatories of this correspondence, believing that “These measures will prevent further suffering and unnecessary loss of life.”

US lawmakers are not the only ones seeking redesignation of Temporary Protected Status for Haitians.

On March 26, nearly 500 organizations in the United States, including the Haitian Bridge Alliance, urged the Biden government to redesignate TPS for Haitians.

“All the conditions that led to the redesignation of TPS by the Biden administration on December 5, 2022, and August 3, 2021, in addition to the deterioration of the crisis described here, present temporary and extraordinary conditions that make a safe return to Haiti impossible. The undersigned organizations ask the Biden administration to consider redesignating Haiti for TPS as soon as possible.”

The organizations signing this letter also emphasized the deterioration of the security situation in Haiti. “More than 1,100 people have been killed, injured, or kidnapped in the country. Gangs now control 80% of the capital, Port-au-Prince. Armed groups use sexual assault and rape to terrorize the population,” write the organizations, who also noted that: “the violence has also blocked trade routes and aid routes, and closed schools.”

“Criminal groups have cut off access to food, clean water, healthcare, and electricity. Half the country eats only one meal a day. Three million children need immediate humanitarian aid. And the conflict is spreading north, threatening the food supply for the entire country.”

In addition to the extension and redesignation of Temporary Protected Status, the signatories also requested that the Biden administration remove the 30,000 cap under the Humanitarian Program, better known as the Biden program. “We urge the administration to remove the arbitrary monthly cap imposed on CHNV parolees. Given the national emergency in Haiti, allowing American sponsors who are currently waiting to sponsor individuals from Haiti is a much safer option than forcing Haitians to flee through irregular migration channels.”

Since the launch of the humanitarian visa program, over 138,000 individuals have been admitted to the United States. This makes Haiti the country that has contributed the most to the Biden program. It also increases the number of potentially eligible Haitians for Temporary Protected Status.

According to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), cited by the Associated Press, over 105,000 Haitian immigrants are expected to be eligible for a new TPS if the US administration decides to redesignate TPS for Haitians.

You can access the letter from organizations advocating for the redesignation of TPS for Haitians by clicking on the link below:

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