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Oct. 26, 2017 letter to DHS Acting Sec. Duke -
"The U.S. Chamber of Commerce urges the Department of Homeland Security to extend the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designations for El Salvador, Honduras, and Haiti. These designations have been in place since 2001, 1999, and 2010 respectively and, according to the Center for Migration Studies, apply to a significant number of individuals – 195,000 Salvadorans, 57,000 Hondurans, and 50,000 Haitians.
While the Chamber appreciates that the TPS program is intended to be temporary, the reality is these individuals have now lived and worked in communities across this nation for in some cases nearly two decades now. We urge you to extend the current TPS designations and to work with Congress on a more permanent resolution to the status of these TPS beneficiaries.
The labor force participation for each of these nation’s respective TPS populations is over 80%. Terminating these designations would end the work authorization of many key employees for our member companies. Further, the loss of employment authorization for these populations would adversely impact several key industries where TPS recipients make up a significant amount of the workforce. These industries include construction, food processing, hospitality, and home healthcare services.
With regard to the construction industry, ending the TPS designation for these three countries will exacerbate existing labor shortages in the industry at a time when such workers are essential to hurricane recovery efforts in states like Texas and Florida. There are an estimated 50,000 construction workers from these three countries who have TPS, many of them residing in these two states. Terminating these individuals’ work authorization would run counter to the administration’s goal of ensuring a timely and full recovery for these disaster areas."