Last week, U.S. District Judge Edward M. Chen blocks the Trump administration from disbanding the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program which enables immigrants from Haiti, Sudan, Nicaragua, and El Salvador to live and work in the United States.
Since being created by Congress back in 1990, over 300,000 immigrants are currently enrolled in the program. TPS was designed to allow citizens suffering from natural disasters or civil unrest in ten countries to stay in the U.S. on a temporary basis.
However, the Trump administration ended protections for immigrants in six countries over the past year. Back in September 2017, TPS for Sudan citizens were terminated despite the fact millions of people have been displaced due to violence, disease, and food shortages. In the following month, the administrated eliminated TPS for Haiti citizens, which affects more than 50,000 individuals. Protections for citizens of Nicaragua, El Salvador, Nepal, and Honduras ended in the months following.
The Americans Civil Liberties Union filed a class-action lawsuit (Ramos v. Nielson) in the Northern District of California in March, alleging the current administration failed to provide the constitutional protections of due process to those affected by the termination of TPS. In two weeks prior to Judge Chen’s response, he heard oral arguments from the parties involved.
In the ruling, the federal judge stated the end of TPS would result in substantial damage and hardship for immigrants since many of them have lived in the country for at least 10 years, raised families during their stay, and were part of the U.S. working force. He also added that evidence was present that President Trump attempted to terminate the program based on animosity toward immigrants who were either not Caucasian or of European descent and failed to demonstrate how the government would suffer harm while TPS continues.