For Immediate Release: 9/6/23
Contact: [email protected]
CITIES FOR ACTION LEADERS CALL ON BIDEN ADMINISTRATION TO PROTECT IMMIGRANTS FROM 11 COUNTRIES USING TEMPORARY PROTECTED STATUS
Today more than 30 mayors and county executives from across the country sent a letter to the Biden Administration requesting that they redesignate or designate 11 countries for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). The countries for redesignation include Venezuela, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Cameroon, and Nepal and countries for initial designation include Guatemala, Mali, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mauritania, and Nigeria.
The letter emphasizes that TPS is designed to protect individuals from being deported to countries where they would be in danger and also has the benefit of helping those countries recover. TPS redesignations and designations contribute to the broader regional migration strategy, in part by ensuring that those seeking protections in the United States have their claims heard expeditiously. This helps to clear the years-long asylum case backlog as individuals transition to TPS and those with open court cases close them faster. In this way, TPS is an important tool toward reducing years-long wait times that some experts have argued has been a pull factor.
The letter also underscores that TPS redesignations and designations for these countries are also good for our communities and our nation as a whole. Extending TPS protections with new designations will allow TPS beneficiaries to continue to live and work in the United States, which would also benefit the United States economy. TPS protections would add eligible workers to the workforce at a time of tight labor markets across the country and take pressure off the social safety net by allowing beneficiaries the ability to more fully provide for themselves and their families.
As the Biden administration considers redesignations and designations for various countries, Cities for Action leaders urge the administration to act rapidly in providing critical protections to our immigrant communities across the country.
Mayor Eric Adams, New York, NY: “Today I join mayors and county executives from across the country in urging the federal government to extend and expand Temporary Protected Status (TPS),” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams. “TPS is a life-saving tool that protects our community members who have escaped dangerous situations and fled here to find safety and pursue the American Dream. In New York City, where we have welcomed more than 100,000 asylum seekers since last spring, TPS will allow our newest neighbors to get to work, find stability, and put food on the tables for their families.”
Mayor Michelle Wu, Boston, MA: “Massachusetts is home to nearly 20,000 Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients, many of whom are already living and working in Boston. Extending TPS is crucial to providing stability for them and their families. This would keep families together and allow newly arrived immigrants and long-time immigrant residents to safely live and work in the U.S., fill impactful staffing shortages, and take pressure off the social safety net for all.”
Mayor Jim Kenney, Philadelphia, PA: “I join the Cities for Action national network in urging the Biden-Harris Administration to expand access to Temporary Protected Status. As a welcoming city, Philadelphia has received many migrants who are eager to work and deserve to live without the fear of deportation. Their participation and inclusion in our communities is crucial for the success of our city, which prioritizes the safety and well being of every family."
Mayor Ed Gainey, Pittsburgh, PA: “Extending and expanding Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for select countries is right in line with my vision for Pittsburgh, and for the United States of America, to be a safe and welcome place where everyone can live and thrive. TPS offers safety for those who would otherwise face danger in their countries of origin and helping these individuals to feel welcome and able to thrive while they are here. This security allows them to contribute in so many vital ways to innovation and growth in the communities where they are living here in the United States.”
Mayor Ras J. Baraka, Newark, NJ: "In the City of Newark, we understand the importance of ensuring that all Newarkers, regardless of their immigration status are provided with opportunity to secure the American Dream. Being one of the most diverse cities in New Jersey, we recognize that immigrants come to America with the hope of finding sanctuary within our country's borders. Therefore, we have a responsibility to ensure that these individuals are provided with an opportunity to have their claims heard expeditiously as well as have the ability to secure employment so that they may provide for themselves and their families. Newark, a sanctuary city and a home of immigrants, supports extending temporary protected status to these 11 countries.”
About Cities for Action
Cities for Action is a bipartisan coalition of nearly 200 U.S. mayors and county executives working to advocate for and promote civic inclusion of our immigrant communities. Click HERE to see a list of Cities for Action mayors and county executives. To learn more about our work, follow us on Twitter.