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Justice, Peace, and Integrity of Creation

A Ministry of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate

United States Province

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Haitians in US Granted Temporary Protective Status

January 15th, 2010

Haitian refugeesThe Obama Administration late Friday afternoon announced the granting of Temporary Protective Status to undocumented Haitians currently living in the United States. This Protection is for a period of 18 months and will apply only to Haitians already in the US. The Administration had suspended deportations of Haitians immediately following the massive earthquake on Tuesday that devastated Port au Prince, the Haitian capital.

The Oblate JPIC Office welcomes this development. Thanks to everyone who responded to our Action Alert on this.

TPS is meant to protect nationals of a country that has experienced political turmoil or a natural disaster. Haiti clearly qualifies. With a grant of TPS, Haitians in the U.S. now have permission to work, allowing them to provide money for their extended family members in Haiti, thus magnifying relief efforts. As the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, Haiti already depends significantly on remittances. By allowing some 30,000 Haitians to work and send monies directly to people who can use it to rebuild their lives, the suffering will be reduced significantly.

Clearly offering TPS to undocumented Haitians now inside the United States will not solve all of Haiti’s problems, but it is a critical part of a comprehensive plan to address the current humanitarian emergency.

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