Honduras announced Monday the opening of an office in Washington, D.C. to help illegal Honduran immigrants take advantage of amnesty.
The effort, which is being led by Honduras’ Ambassador to the U.S. Marlon Tabora, aims to help illegal Honduran immigrants in the D.C. area — whether they are or are not protected by Temporary Protected Status (TPS), Proceso Digital reports. Honduras is one of 13 countries that receives TPS.
The Department of Homeland Security gives TPS status to nationals of countries that are deemed unsuitable for return. TPS status extends for 18 months and can be renewed as many times as DHS sees fit. Hondurans and foreign nationals who last resided in Honduras have been receiving TPS status since 1998, and it was last renewed in 2016 till 2018 for approximately 57,000 individuals.
Individuals who get TPS receive work permits,access to certain welfare programs, drivers’ licenses, social security and protection from deportation. Tabora said that the opening of office in the D.C. consulate will not only work to help Honduras currently covered by TPS, but those illegal immigrants eligible who have yet to apply. Illegal Honduran immigrants or illegal immigrants who last resided in Honduras can get TPS if they have been living continuously in the U.S. since Dec. 30, 1998.
TPS status was given to Hondurans due to Hurricane Mitch in 1998, which Honduras has yet to recover from, according to past secretaries of homeland security. The Trump administration has yet to signal that they will do away with the TPS program, which immigration hawk Mark Krikorian deemed a “scam.”
The USCIS recently announced that they are extending work permits by six months for illegal El Salvadoran immigrants who receive TPS.