Connecticut’s Haitians brace for changes following TPS decision

<p>Members of the Haitian-American community in Connecticut are bracing for changes after the Trump administration announced an end to temporary protection for Haitians.</p>

News 12 Staff

Nov 22, 2017, 1:16 AM

Updated 2,372 days ago

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Members of the Haitian-American community in Connecticut are bracing for changes after the Trump administration announced an end to temporary protection for Haitians.
President Donald Trump's administration this week announced one last 18-month extension of the temporary protected status, or TPS.
Phil Berns, an immigration attorney, says that thousands of people in the region could be affected by the decision -- and many expected this would come after former secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly announced in May that the government would limit the extension of the TPS program.
TPS is extended to people in the United States who have come from countries crippled by disaster. Homeland Security declared in a statement Monday that the extraordinary but temporary conditions caused by the 2010 earthquake in Haiti no longer exist.
But Berns says many people who came to Connecticut under TPS no longer have ties to their native country.
"A large percentage of them have been here for 10 years and 15 years," he says. "So they have made their lives here. They don't have lives back in Haiti."
Local Haitians don't agree. They say the country is still in recovery and won't be able to sustain the influx of people returning from the U.S.
Guy Bocicaut, a member of the Haitian American Professional Association of Connecticut, says it will be difficult to uproot Haitians under TPS, many of whom have been in the U.S. for years.
Bocicaut says it's unfortunate that people are politicizing this issue. He believes that if people look at it as a humanitarian problem, they'd be more inclined to find a workable, positive solution.


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