Thousands of Nicaraguans in the US Just Got Bad News

María Ulloa Funes an immigrant from Honduras who

Martinez migrated to Long Island in 1998 when she was 16 and received temporary legal protection from deportation under TPS in 2001.

Last week, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson sent a letter to Duke essentially giving DHS the green light to lift protections for Central Americans and Haitians, telling her that unauthorized immigrants from those countries no longer warranted an exemption from deportation. As its name suggests, TPS is ostensibly a short-term humanitarian benefit that lets foreign nationals stay while their home countries recover from catastrophes such as civil wars, natural disasters or epidemics. Every 6 to 18 months, immigration officials determine whether TPS is extended for each country. The announcement comes before the administration is set to announce whether it will extend the program for Hondurans and Nicaraguans on Monday (UPDATE: The Department of Homeland Security made a Monday evening decision about TPS for Nicaragua but said it needed more time to explore a decision on Honduras), and Haitians on November 23.

"The decision to end TPS status for Nicaragua is part of Trump's racist drive to force millions of people of color underground, into jails and out of the country".

The advocates also pointed to decisions due in several weeks from homeland security on TPS for people from El Salvador and Haiti, calling on Duke to extend protections without delay.

"An elimination would mean uncertainty".

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House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi took the same tack, accusing the administration of "senseless prejudice" and denouncing the TPS decision as a "cowardly assault on thousands of families in communities across the nation", reports the Washington Post. Over the years, many countries' TPS designations have been regularly renewed, while others have lost them under Democratic and Republican presidents. "As a mother, I am concerned for my family's well-being". TPS for those 260,000 Salvadorans, the largest group of beneficiaries, expires in March. Nearly 200,000 Salvadorans can lose TPS status as compared to the 30,000 Salvadorans who have DACA, according to figures on the Department of Homeland Security's website.

Congress is the only body with the authority to create a path to permanent legal status for TPS holders. Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke confirmed that the decision on Honduras is postponed in order to discuss circumstances particular to that country.

Many hope the Trump administration will decide against eliminating TPS.

McGrorty, executive director of Catholic Legal Services in the Archdiocese of Miami, said US law is meant to be implemented "with a certain degree of kindness and compassion", and that sending people to countries that are ill-prepared to welcome them would do far more harm than good. "They've been getting working and they have 275,000 citizen children".

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