Trump Administration Ends Temporary Protected Status of Salvadorans

By Melanie Arter | January 8, 2018 | 4:44 PM EST

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen M. Nielsen (Screenshot of C-SPAN video)

( – Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen M. Nielsen announced Monday that she is terminating the temporary protected status (TPS) for El Salvador after reviewing the conditions of El Salvador following the 2001 earthquakes that led to the TPS designation.

The actual termination of TPS will take place on Sept. 9, 2019 – 18 months from now.

“The decision to terminate TPS for El Salvador was made after a review of the disaster-related conditions upon which the country’s original designation was based and an assessment of whether those originating conditions continue to exist as required by statute,” Nielsen said in a press release.

“Based on careful consideration of available information, including recommendations received as part of an inter-agency consultation process, the Secretary determined that the original conditions caused by the 2001 earthquakes no longer exist. Thus, under the applicable statute, the current TPS designation must be terminated,” she said.

Nielsen said the “substantial disruption of living conditions caused by the earthquake no longer exist.” Furthermore, the country “received a significant amount of international aid” to help with recovery efforts, “including millions of dollars dedicated to emergency and long-term assistance.”

“Many reconstruction projects have now been completed. Schools and hospitals damaged by the earthquakes have been reconstructed and repaired, homes have been rebuilt, and money has been provided for water and sanitation and to repair earthquake damaged roads and other infrastructure,” Nielsen added.

The secretary has given Salvadorans 18 months “to arrange for their departure or to seek an alternative lawful immigration status in the United States, if eligible.”

“Salvadorans in the United States who benefited from TPS may still receive other protections under our immigration system for which they are eligible,” she said. “The 18 months will also provide time for El Salvador to prepare for the return and reintegration of its citizens.

“During this timeframe, DHS will work with the Department of State and the Government of El Salvador to help educate relevant stakeholders and facilitate an orderly transition,” Nielsen said.  


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