BALTIMORE – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, issued the following statement in response to media reports that the State Department recommended against renewing Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Haiti. Deadlines for decisions on TPS for these countries are as early as November 6 for Honduras.
“If the accounts are true, by recommending against renewing TPS for Central American countries and Haiti, the State Department would have prioritized the White House’s radical anti-immigration agenda over an honest assessment of conditions in each country,” said Cardin. “Facts on the ground show that El Salvador and Honduras suffer the world’s highest murder rates, while Haiti is still dealing with recovery efforts from two recent devastating hurricanes. Suggesting that TPS beneficiaries should return home in the face of such risks is not only inhumane, but could destabilize each country.
“The Department of Homeland Security should do what is right and extend TPS. Not extending TPS would have a negative impact on communities in Maryland and families across America and could separate 320,000 TPS beneficiaries from their tens of thousands of U.S. born children. In Maryland alone, 19,800 Salvadorans are TPS holders and they have approx. 17,100 U.S.-born children.
“As Congress works to find a permanent solution for the Dreamers, it is apparent that we must also prioritize a legislative fix for the Temporary Protected Status program.”
Temporary Protect Status is granted by the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Secretary of State, to individuals where ongoing conflicts, environmental disasters or other extraordinary circumstances make it potentially deadly for them to return home.