The Trump administration has given more than 50,000 Haitians with provisional legal residency 18 months to leave, announcing Monday that it will not renew the Temporary Protected Status that has allowed them to remain in United State for more than 7 years.
The decision came after the Department of Homeland Security determined that the “extraordinary conditions” justifying their presence following a 2010 earthquake “no longer exist,” according to a senior administration official.
“The law makes clear that TPS for Haiti must end,” a senior administration official said in briefing reporters.
DHS officials also said the 18 months is intended to give Haitians with temporary status enough time to arrange for their departure or "to seek an alternative lawful immigration status in the United States, if eligible."
Several federal lawmakers from Florida, a state with the largest Haitian population, immediately criticized the move.
Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., called the move by DHS "unconscionable" and urged the Trump administration to reconsider.
The protection will now permanently terminate July 22, 2019, allowing Haitians living in the U.S. under TPS an 18-month window to return to their homeland.