For Immediate Release
More than 230 Organizations Call for Immediate Protection for Nationals of Central American Countries Devastated by Hurricanes Eta and Iota
Chicago - Alianza Americas along with its partners, Salvadoran Association of Los Angeles (ASOSAL), CASA, Central American Resource Center of San Francisco (CARECEN SF), Central American Resource Center of Washington DC (CARECEN DC), Central American Resource Center of Los Angeles (CARECEN LA), Central American Black Organization (CABO), Centro Presente, Centro Romero, COPAL Minnesota, Florida Immigrant Coalition (FLIC), Hispanic Federation, Hondurans Against AIDS, Latin America Working Group (LAWG), and Oxfam America call upon President Donald J Trump and President-elect Joseph Biden to grant immediate protection, in the form of Temporary Protected Status (TPS), to nationals from the countries of Nicaragua, El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala; countries in Central America that have been hit hard by recent natural disasters that have exacerbated the realities of extreme poverty, violence, and the adverse effects of COVID-19.
Abel Nuñez, executive director of CARECEN DC and vice president of Alianza Americas’ board of directors:
“The situation in Central America is dire. Millions of people are affected and conditions are life-threatening. The U.S. must take swift action and redesignate TPS for El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Honduras, and grant TPS to nationals of Guatemala.”
Daniella Burgi-Palomino, co-director of the Latin America Working Group:
“The impact of these natural disasters, which is still being evaluated, will leave long term consequences across Central America. Without meaningful aid and a clear humanitarian response, the current situation could result in a mass exodus of people who have lost their livelihoods. Emergency aid must be carefully channeled, monitored, and delivered through trusted international and local civil society organizations working to address the needs of those affected.”
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Gustavo Torres, executive director of CASA:
“Conditions in Central America are severe and are compounded by the effects of the global pandemic; a situation that the U.S. is exacerbating by deporting COVID-positive detainees. The U.S. must halt all deportations to affected countries and facilitate the capacity of family members in the U.S. to support the economic recovery in the region.”
Oscar Chacón, executive director of Alianza Americas:
“The aftermath of hurricanes Eta and Iota is emerging as a major humanitarian crisis in Central America with more than 4.9 million people from the region affected. Civil society groups have come together to provide assistance and the government must do the same.”
The letter, signed by more than 230 organizations, makes it clear that the U.S. government must adopt new Temporary Protective Status (TPS) designations for the affected countries left vulnerable by the devastation and existing structural barriers so that people in the U.S. can work and support their families and communities. The Trump Administration, and if not, the Biden Administration, must use their executive authority to grant immediate protection, in the form of Temporary Protected Status.
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