Injunction blocking some TPS terminations is welcome

SILVER SPRING, Maryland—­The decision Oct. 3 by a California federal judge to block the cancellation of Temporary Protected Status for four countries is a welcome step toward protecting about 300,000 people who are facing loss of the status that has allowed them to stay in the United States.

“The court rightly pointed to problems with the administration’s decision-making process in terminating TPS, including possible constitutional violations,” said Jeanne Atkinson, executive director of the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc.

In addition to the legal flaws with the administration’s actions, the judge made note of the Hobson’s choice with which TPS-holding families are contending.

“TPS holders facing cancellation of the program are weighing unthinkable decisions,” Atkinson said. “They are considering whether to bring their children back to countries where rampant violence; inadequate housing; crippled economies; insufficient food and clean water would put their lives at risk, or to break the family apart, leaving children behind without their parents as they return to unstable situations.”

Federal District Court Judge Edward M. Chen issued a preliminary injunction in Ramos v. Nielson blocking the administration’s orders terminating TPS for El Salvador, Haiti, Sudan and Nicaragua. TPS has allowed certain people from those countries to remain in the United States after their homelands were rendered dangerous or unstable due to natural disasters or conflicts. His restraining order did not cover the cancellation of TPS for Honduras and Nepal, or a similar program, Deferred Enforced Departure, for Liberians.

The administration must report back to the court within 15 days on steps it has taken to comply with Chen's ruling. He scheduled a case management conference for Oct. 26. TPS for Sudan, which affects about 1,000 people, is set to terminate Nov. 2. The termination dates for Nicaragua, Haiti and El Salvador are in 2019.

CLINIC joins with other advocates for people with TPS in urging Congress to enact legislation that will permanently protect TPS holders and their families.

For further information about TPS see CLINIC’s extensive resources or contact our communications department, 301-565-4830, or pzapor@cliniclegal.org.