Florida lawmakers are criticizing a decision by the Trump administration to end a temporary residency program for almost 60,000 Haitians who evacuated the island country following the 2010 earthquake.
- Democrats, Republicans says Haitians need more time
- Haitians have until July 2019 to leave U.S.
"Significant steps have been taken to improve the stability and quality of life for Haitian citizens, and Haiti is able to safely receive traditional levels of returned citizens," according to a statement from the Department of Homeland Security. "Haiti has also demonstrated a commitment to adequately prepare for when the country’s TPS designation is terminated."
The U.S. can grant citizens from certain countries Temporary Protected Status.
The designation allows Haitian refugees who escaped the 2010 earthquake to live and work in the U.S. Both Republicans and Democrats are concerned with the decision to end TPS for Haitians.
There is no reason to send 60,000 Haitians back to a country that cannot provide for them. This decision today by DHS is unconscionable. And I am strongly urging the administration to reconsider. Ultimately, we need a permanent legislative solution. https://t.co/Ft0bE0itf6— Bill Nelson (@SenBillNelson) November 21, 2017
I travelled to #Haiti after the earthquake in 2010 and after hurricane Matthew in 2016. So I can personally attest that #Haiti is not prepared to take back nearly 60,000 #TPS recipients under these difficult and harsh conditions.— Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (@RosLehtinen) November 21, 2017
Haitians have until July 2019 to leave the U.S. The Trump administration hopes that gives them enough time to prepare for their return home.