Should TPS Be Extended?
Part III of a series on TPS
Missed the last blog?
President Trump was elected in part due to his hardline stance on immigration, such as promising the creation of a border wall and a crackdown on both legal and illegal immigration. Given this context, the Trump Administration’s proposal to end TPS is unsurprising.
This installment of the TPS series serves to layout the chief arguments for and against the TPS program.
Arguments to End TPS + Rebuttal
1. It is not so ‘temporary’:
Argument: Critics have pointed out that some TPS recipients have remained in the United States for over 20 years, and argue that their protection from deportation is no longer temporary. Such critics are under the impression that the U.S. government routinely and blindly renews TPS applications, regardless of the designated country’s current conditions.
Rebuttal: It is true that TPS recipients, particularly the ones who have been here for an extended period, often have built lives for themselves in the United States. Many have jobs, friends, and families – including children born here. TPS recipients do not necessarily have a home or economic opportunity to which to return, due to continued deteriorating conditions that make their home country unsafe to live in. The Department of Homeland Security regularly reviews living conditions in TPS-designated countries before extending TPS.
2. Conditions in designated countries have improved:
Argument: Americans argue that countries such as Nicaragua, El Salvador, Honduras, and Haiti, who received TPS due to natural disasters anywhere from 20 plus years ago have had ample time to recover and allow for the return of TPS individuals from the United States.
Rebuttal: Contrary to critics’ beliefs, most countries that have been receiving TPS for years are still not safe to return to. The Secretary of Homeland Security examines all possible reasons for TPS extension, including: a subsequent natural disaster, prolonged violence causing a power vacuum and political chaos, a health epidemic, etc. All of these conditions weaken the designated country’s economy making it impossible to adequately handle the return of TPS recipients.
3. TPS recipients hurt the U.S. economy:
Argument: TPS critics rally around steadfast anti-immigration claims, blaming TPS recipients for the United States’ economic woes, claiming that they take jobs from Americans and exploit America’s social service programs.
Rebuttal: In actuality, TPS recipients aid the U.S. economy. TPS recipients often hold jobs – meaning they pay federal, state, and local taxes, and spend their income at U.S. based businesses. Taken jointly, these factors mean that TPS recipients increase tax revenue and stimulate the economy.
While awaiting the Trump Administration’s decision on whether or not to extend TPS on a country-by-country basis, thousands feel as if they are stuck in limbo, and wonder where they will be in a few short months. To the question of whether TPS should be extended, compassion, reasonableness and sound judgment should guide this decision rather than bias and fear.
Country highlight: Haiti — coming November 3rd