CLINIC denounces administration’s decision to end Temporary Protected Status for Sudan | CLINIC

CLINIC denounces administration’s decision to end Temporary Protected Status for Sudan

Sep 20, 2017

SILVER SPRING, Maryland – The Catholic Legal Immigration Network is shocked by the administration’s decision to end Temporary Protected Status for Sudan and send TPS holders back to the beleaguered country next year. TPS allows immigrants to remain in the U.S. and work if during the time they were in the U.S. their country became unsafe, be it from catastrophic natural disaster, disease, war, or other extraordinary, temporary conditions.

The decision issued by the Department of Homeland Security states that Acting Secretary Elaine Duke has reviewed the conditions in Sudan and determined that they have “sufficiently improved for TPS purposes.” Meanwhile, just months ago the United Nations published a report saying that there are 2.3 million displaced people across Sudan in need of humanitarian assistance, including 8,200 people who have been newly displaced due to ongoing conflict in Darfur (as of June 30, 2017). Sudan is also facing a growing cholera epidemic and 3.6 million people are food insecure, with areas of the country facing emergency food shortages.

“This is a cruel and inhumane decision,” said Jeanne Atkinson, CLINIC’s executive director. “The law permits the secretary of the Department of Homeland Security to extend TPS for countries so long as dangerous conditions exist, which is clearly the case in Sudan. There is absolutely no need to send people who are living peacefully, raising their children and contributing to the American economy and society back to a country where their lives could immediately be put at risk.”

In addition to concluding that it is safe to return TPS holders to Sudan under the current conditions, Jill Marie Bussey, CLINIC’s director of advocacy, said, “the Department of Homeland Security failed to publicly announce its decision on whether or not to extend TPS for Sudan and South Sudan, on Sept. 3, as required by law. People are taking notice of the administration’s sharp detour from well-established protocols for providing public notice of these types of decisions. As a result of the lack of transparency, there has been mass anxiety and confusion in the field.”  

There are 435,000 TPS holders in the U.S. from 10 countries. “We believe the administration made the right decision on South Sudan this week in granting an 18-month extension, but termination of TPS for Sudan is not justified,” said Bussey. “Over the next few months, the administration will be making decisions on whether or not to extend TPS for Honduras, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Haiti, and Syria. We are calling on the administration to consistently follow the law and keep TPS in place for these countries so long as dangerous conditions exist.”

CLINIC also delivered a letter to the Trump administration Sept. 18, signed by nearly 700 religious leaders and organizations, that called on the administration to handle TPS as Congress intended.