The United States extends TPS for hundreds of thousands of immigrants

The TPS extension covers citizens of El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Haiti.

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The United States extended until mid-2024 its immigration program that grants Temporary Protected Status (TPS) that prevents migrants from being deported, for citizens of six countries, including Haiti and three Central American nations, the Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) reported Thursday.

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) will be extended until June 30, 2024 for citizens of Haiti, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Sudan, Honduras and Nepalaccording to a document filed by USCIS and will no longer expire on December 31, 2022, as previously scheduled.

“Thank God,” said Milena Mayorga, El Salvador’s ambassador to the United States, who tweeted the document, adding that the work visas for the beneficiaries would be valid for another 18 months.

People from El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Haiti, Nepal, and Sudan who have TPS they will be able to renew the immigration benefit, which allows them to work and live legally in the US until June 2024the DHS reported.

The announcement comes less than a month after the permit for people of these six nationalities expires on December 31.

The “Tepesians”, as those covered by this benefit are known, are involved in a legal dispute, since the government of former President Donald Trump revoked the protection for migrants from these six countries.

Recently, conciliation talks between the current government administration and lawyers representing a group of TPS-protected individuals officially collapsed, leaving hundreds of thousands of migrants in limbo.

A federal court in California ruled in 2018 in favor of immigrants after rule that former President Trump illegally terminated the TPS of those six countries and had racist motivations.

However, in September 2020, a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit of Appeals reversed the lower court’s order and again placed those protected by TPS from those six countries at risk.

The TPS is a temporary immigration benefit that gives a status to people from countries that are going through emergency situations such as natural disasters or wars.

The US currently grants TPS to nationals of 15 countries around the world, including Ethiopia, Afghanistan and Ukraine, the latest to be announced this year. Some 400,000 people benefit from these programs nationwide.

The Department of Homeland Security announced the extension, to be published next week, “to ensure its continued compliance” with two ongoing court cases, according to the document.