Trump Administration Tells 200000 Salvadorans To Leave Or Get Deported

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Young and other advocates are also concerned about the impact of the decision on local economies like Long Island's and the fate of US citizen children of affected families.

The Trump administration said Monday it is ending special protections for Salvadoran immigrants, an action that could force almost 200,000 to leave the September 2019 or face deportation. Salvadoran immigrants will face possible deportation if they don't leave the country by September 2019, or find another way to obtain legal status in the United States.

Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen's decision, while not surprising, will send shivers through parts of Washington, Los Angeles, New York, Houston and other metropolitan areas that are home to large numbers of Salvadorans, who have enjoyed special protection since earthquakes struck the Central American country in 2001.

Nielsen has the ultimate decision on whether to extend El Salvador's status, but advocates on the issue from both sides of the aisle anticipate a similar decision to that on Haiti, a struggling country as well, but one the department says has recovered from its devastating quake in 2010.

The administration is granting an 18-month delay so that Salvadorans here under TPS can make arrangements to depart or can apply for other statuses if they qualify. There are more than 260,000 Salvadoran immigrants with the status in the United States, including more than 36,000 in Texas, according to the Center for American Progress.

There were 262,500 people, mostly adults, under TPS across the United States as of October 2017, according to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services that administers the TPS program.

The decision is likely to please immigration hard-liners who argue the TPS program was never meant to provide long-term residency.

El Salvador is the fourth country whose citizens have lost Temporary Protected Status under President Donald Trump.

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Homeland Security also said more than 39,000 Salvadorans have returned home from the two years, demonstrating El Salvador's capacity to absorb people.

"Only Congress can legislate a permanent solution addressing the lack of an enduring lawful immigration status of those now protected by TPS who have lived and worked in the United States for many years", the announcement stated.

Salvadoran immigrant Orlando Zepeda, who came to the 1984 to flee civil war, said he wasn't surprised by Monday's decision given the administration's position on other countries.

Homeland Security officials said the administration was open to Congress coming up with an amnesty allowing them to remain in the U.S.

In November, the Trump administration said it was ending TPS for Haitians who came to the USA after the deadly 2010 quake.

President Donald Trump, accompanied by Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen, speaks during a meeting with Republican Senators on immigration at the White House in Washington on January 4, 2018.

The benefit, which includes work authorization, can be renewed up to 18 months at a time by the Homeland Security secretary. Haitians have also been protected since a 2010 natural disaster.

Last year, the administration ended those protections for citizens of Haiti and Nicaragua.