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Administration Announces Cessation of TPS For El Salvadorans

The Administration on January 8 announced an end to Temporary Protected Status (“TPS”) for individuals from El Salvador.

Then TPS program allows designation of a country as unsafe for return, permitting individuals from that country present in the US to apply for TPS status which grants protection from deportation or removal and the ability to apply for work and travel authorization (though earlier administration action made use of TPS travel authorization problematic). The statute authorizing the program was signed into law by President George Bush in 1990, and allows designation of a country for TPS for 6, 12 or 18 months – but with no limit on renewals of the designation.

TPS designation was originally granted to El Salvadorans in the US back in 2001, in the wake of a major earthquake. It’s estimated that 200,000 El Salvadorans are in the US under TPS designations, more than any other group

The move comes only weeks after withdrawal of TPS for nationals of Haiti, originally granted in 2010 after a major earthquake struck that country (Nicaragua lost its designation last year). While a significant blow to Haitian national living in the US, the length of time El Salvadorans under TPS combined with the number of people involved imply an even broader and more severe impact to this move.