Human Rights First Welcomes Extension and Redesignation of Temporary Protected Status for Venezuela and Common Sense Work Permit Actions
WASHINGTON – The Biden administration extended and redesignated Venezuela for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) on Wednesday evening, providing security to thousands of Venezuelans. This critical decision preceded an announcement of a set of actions, including necessary administrative steps to speed up the processing of work authorization documents for asylum seekers and other recently arrived migrants and lengthen the validity period of certain work permits to five years.
Human Rights First applauds these affirmative steps to provide protection and security to displaced Venezuelans and the many other asylum seekers and migrants who will benefit from the work permit processing changes.
“The administration took important and necessary action to extend protection to thousands of Venezuelans in the United States. This welcome step will provide these Venezuelans with physical and economic security,” said Eleanor Acer, senior director for refugee protection with Human Rights First. “This redesignation is more than warranted by the dire conditions in Venezuela, and we urge the administration to quickly move ahead with other TPS redesignations, designations, and renewals.”
The human rights situation in Venezuela has significantly deteriorated due to crackdowns on political opposition, the ruling party’s reliance on widely condemned elections to control all branches of the government, the horrific use of torture, and a severe humanitarian crisis. The vast majority—6 million of the 7.4 million—of Venezuelans who have fled are hosted by countries other than the United States in the Americas.
“The additional work permit improvements announced for asylum seekers and other migrants will go a long way to ensuring their stability and safety while they rebuild their lives in the United States,” added Acer. “These steps will help remedy some of the counterproductive work permit delays that have hurt people seeking refuge, their families, and U.S. cities. They address long-standing processing inefficiencies that have plagued U.S. agencies.”
Human Rights First’s legal representation team looks forward to working with partners and, through its efforts in New York City and other locations, to assist asylum seekers, TPS recipients, and others to file their work authorization applications quickly.