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November 7th, 2017
Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Seth Moulton (D-MA) led a letter with colleagues Congressman Jim McGovern (D-MA) and Congressman William R. Keating (D-MA) to Governor Baker strongly urging him to speak publicly in support of extending Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haiti, Honduras, and El Salvador. This letter calls on Governor Baker to publicly state his support for some of the largest immigrant communities in Massachusetts in the wake of the Trump Administration deciding not to extend TPS for Nicaraguans.
“We are proud to represent Massachusetts and our strong history as a state of immigrants from our founding and look forward to ensuring it remains a model of American values, freedom, and economic vitality.”
A full text of the letter can be found below:
November 7, 2017
Governor Charles Baker
24 Beacon St.
Boston, MA 02133
Dear Governor Baker,
As members of the Massachusetts Congressional delegation with a particular interest in immigration, we write to strongly urge you to speak publicly in support of extending Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haiti, Honduras, and El Salvador. The Trump administration’s failure to renew TPS would result in tremendous human cost not only to hard-working families and community members but the Massachusetts economy.
Across our country, 320,000 individuals from 10 countries wracked by civil war, natural disasters, or other extraordinary tragedies currently hold TPS and contribute to our economy. In Massachusetts, 7,800 people are TPS holders, including 5,000 Salvadorans and 2,700 Haitians. Along with direct holders of TPS, 4,200 U.S. born children in Massachusetts have Salvadoran parents who are TPS holders and 1,000 U.S. born children in Massachusetts have Haitian parents who are TPS holders. Failure to extend TPS for these individuals would cause thousands of families to be ripped apart and communities to lose a workforce that is integral to the fabric of our state.
The economic contributions of TPS holders to Massachusetts are significant. TPS holders are our friends, neighbors, and contributors to key sectors of our state’s economy including the tourism, food service, and home healthcare industries as well as retail trades. Recent analyses have shown that as much as $645 million would be lost from Massachusetts’ GDP annually without TPS holders. More specifically, Salvadoran and Haitian TPS holders contribute $426 million and $203 million respectively to Massachusetts’ economy each year. This is a concern shared by the national business community evidenced by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce recently urging the administration to extend TPS.
Not only would failure to extend TPS rip apart families and communities across Massachusetts as well as negatively impact our economy, El Salvador, Honduras, and Haiti are unable to successfully reintegrate thousands of deported individuals at this time. El Salvador and Honduras are ranked among the most violent countries in the world and struggle with grinding poverty and gang activity. Haiti continues to struggle with a cholera epidemic and the inability to provide even the most basic security and medical services to its citizens.
Both Republican and Democratic administrations have designated and extended TPS to populations in dire circumstances experiencing “extraordinary and temporary conditions in the foreign state that prevent aliens who are nationals of the state from returning to that state in safety” (8 U.S. Code § 1254a). The Department of Homeland Security is currently reviewing potential extension with a potential November announcement.
As members of the Massachusetts Congressional delegation, we call on you to recognize the significant contributions of TPS holders to our communities and economy and speak publicly in support of TPS extension. We also urge you to work with Republican governors across the country to ensure the administration fully understands the consequences of failing to extend TPS.
We are proud to represent Massachusetts and our strong history as a state of immigrants from our founding and look forward to ensuring it remains a model of American values, freedom, and economic vitality.
Seth Moulton Jim McGovern William R. Keating
Member of Congress Member of Congress Member of Congress
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