On February 6, 2014, a group of 20 bipartisan Senators wrote to Secretary of State John Kerry requesting the Department of State to grant Temporary Protective Status (“TPS”) to certain Filipinos in the United States. Nearly three (3) months ago, Typhoon Haiyan devastated portions of the Philippines and killed more than 6,000 persons. The scope of the Haiyan’s destruction was immense: more than 1 million homes destroyed, 4 million persons displaced, and more than 16 million persons affected. A TPS designation would permit certain Filipinos who are in the United States to remain here for up to 18 months.
Because of the strain on local governments in the provision of basic services, the Senators urged Secretary Kerry to grant Filipinos in the United States this additional time until they can safety return home without adding to the strain of ongoing efforts in the affected areas in their home country. The U.S. has granted TPS to many nationals after their home country has suffered a natural disaster, such Hurricane Mitch in Honduras and Nicaragua in 1999, as an earthquake in El Salvador in 2001, and an earthquake in Haiti in 2010.
The Department of State remains in discussions whether to make a TPS designation to benefit Filipinos.
Stewart Rabinowitz practices United States immigration and nationality law. He is Board Certified in Immigration and Nationality Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Rabinowitz & Rabinowitz, P.C. is an immigration law firm representing businesses, families, and individuals.