Dashed hopes, upended lives as Trump ends protection for Salvadorans

Let’s not lose sight of the fact that the immigration and TPS debate is as much about the story we tell ourselves about the USA as it is about immigrants and refugees. A key question we tend to ignore: Is there integrity in the decisions (do we do as we say)?

The US is not entrenched in bygone tradition, we are a nation that aspires to change for the better. Immigrants have always been agents of transformation and there have always been pressures to stifle change and transformation.

We’re at that point again, and in a real sense have never left it. All stories we tell ourselves have a mass that generates a gravity-pull, a self-preserving fear of change. National myths have the same effect.

Immigration and TPS are about who we tell ourselves we are as much as they are about politics and policy. Story gravity is relentless, we should be as well. The idea is to change the story and make the pull a positive one.

WASHINGTON – Hopes were dashed Monday for tens of thousands of people from El Salvador with Temporary Protected Status who have lived more than a decade in the U.S., but whom the Trump administration said must leave the country next year.

“My children are calling me saying, ‘Mommy what are we going to do?’ I don’t know.” said Maria Luz de Recinos of Annapolis, Md., who raised her three children here. None have permanent legal status in the U.S.

The administration announced Tuesday that roughly 200,000 Salvadorans with Temporary Protected Status, TPS, have until September 9, 2019 to leave.

The decision upends the lives of many Salvadorans whose initial 18-month stay, granted in 2001, became years here as their TPS was extended again and again during the Bush and Obama administrations.

The Trump administration’s move also puts in limbo some of the 190,000 or more of their U.S.-born children of the Salvadorans.


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