CaribWorldNews, NEW YORK, NY, Thurs. Jan. 14, 2010: A Haitian-born New York City politician says the catastrophe in Haiti should push President Obama to approve Temporary Protected Status for Haitians living in the United States.
New York City Councilman, Mathieu Eugene, renewed the call for TPS last night as he appeared on New York One`s `Road to City Hall,` to speak on the devastating 7.0 earthquake that struck the poverty stricken country of Haiti Tuesday afternoon.
Eugene said the President should approve TPS for undocumented Haitians since it would be impossible to deport anyone to Haiti under the present circumstances.
Eugene`s call came as the United States government on Wednesday halted all deportations to Haiti because of the earthquake there.
But the decision does not grant so-called TPS to Haitians even though it has been applied to nationals from other countries in the wake of natural disasters. Hondurans and Nicaraguans secured TPS after Hurricane Mitch in 1999 and Salvadorans after a series of earthquakes in 2001.
TPS allows immigrants without green cards to stay and work in the U.S. legally. Hundreds of Haitians have been living on the edge for months now, unsure if they could be processed for deportation.
The call for TPS was echoed in Washington by U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar, who has been a leading advocate of TPS for Haitians in Congress, and is the sponsor of legislation to make it happen.
He said the devastation from the earthquake is one more reason why TPS should be granted.