Issued May 22, 2021
San Francisco - Service Employees International Union (SEIU) International President Mary Kay Henry released the following statement today after Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas announced that the Biden administration will redesignate Haiti for Temporary Protected Status (TPS):
“On behalf of SEIU’s 2 million members, I am grateful to Secretary Mayorkas and President Biden’s administration for extending Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Haitians living in the U.S. who are unable to return to their homeland due to the worsening fragile and extremely dangerous conditions in that country. We are particularly grateful on behalf of our Haitian members, many of whom have family who will now be able to remain here safely, free from fear of deportation back to a nation in crisis.
“This decision represents a giant step towards fulfilling a promise that President Biden made during the campaign, and it represents a sharp break from the actions of the previous administration which tried to terminate the status of Haitians who had been living in the U.S. lawfully for years under TPS. Hopefully, the deportation flights to Haiti will also soon end.
“This is another step toward a more just and humane immigration system and repairing the damage done by the previous administration. We once again call on Congress to ensure that all 11 million undocumented immigrants have a pathway to citizenship. More than 130,000 TPS workers served on our frontlines in the face of a deadly pandemic to keep our country running safely. These are our home care workers who took care of our families during the pandemic, the housekeepers and janitors disinfecting our hospitals and office buildings, and the farmworkers who put food on our tables. They deserve to be respected, protected and paid. As President Biden has said, ‘the country supports immigration reform. Congress should act.’ It is the only way to truly honor our immigrants and their invaluable contributions.”