For Immediate Release:
November 7, 2017
WASHINGTON, DC – Linda Hartke, president of Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS), one of the largest refugee resettlement agencies in the U.S., released the following statement today following the Department of Homeland Security’s announcement to terminate the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program for citizens of Nicaragua and grant a brief extension to citizens of Honduras:
“The Department of Homeland Security’s termination of the TPS program for Nicaraguans is one more stain on America’s history of humanitarian leadership. This decision overlooked simple truths. Among them, TPS recipients and their families have long integrated into American society. They are valuable members of our communities—they work hard and pay taxes, they own homes and businesses, and many have children who have grown up as U.S. citizens knowing no other homeland. This decision means they will now be targeted for deportation and their U.S. citizen children are at risk of being separated from their families and ending up in the foster care system. As Americans, and people of faith, separating families goes against the very core of our beliefs.”
“We urge the Administration to reconsider its decision on Nicaragua and extend TPS for Hondurans beyond the automatic six-month extension. We also urge Congress to pass the American Promise Act and put an end to the suffering of these families and their communities.”
Founded in 1939, Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service is the second largest refugee resettlement agency in the United States. It is nationally recognized for its leadership advocating with refugees, asylum seekers, unaccompanied children, immigrants in detention, families fractured by migration and other vulnerable populations. Through more than 75 years of service and advocacy, LIRS has helped over 500,000 migrants and refugees rebuild their lives in America.