TPS (Temporary Protected Status): Where Do We Stand?
There are more great new developments spreading out about the TPS designation. Our great friend HB Bhandari recently wrote on his Facebook status that the powerful congressman Dutch Ruppersberger (D-MD) who is the member of the House Appropriation Committee, has agreed to be a cosponsor of the recently proposed bill HR 2033 sponsored by Al Green (D-FL). Likewise great community leader and political enthusiasts Shyam D. Karki, Hari K. Sharma, Suman Timsina, Umesh Koirala, Jewan Tiwari and many more other friends working in their constituents. All of our great fellow Nepalis are working very hard to bring more elected officials in our favor.
Now we have all together 52 cosponsors (including one republican Smith Christopher from NJ) from the US lower chamber House of Representatives. Likewise Senator Benjamin L. Cardin, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations committee, has wrote a letter to President Barack Obama urging to designate TPS status to Nepal. So far there are a total 12 Senators (including one Republican Senator Kirk from IL) who have supported the measure.
Assistance Secretary of the State for South and Central Asian Affairs Nisha Desai Biswal recently spoke to the US senate floor, clarifying her support of the TPS Designation. She further stated, "As per USCIS 10,000 to 25,000 Nepali national will be benefited through the TPS designation. Nepal government has already requested to the Secretary of State John Kerry for the TPS designation and he has already sent his recommendation to the Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson."
Recently I was able to reach out with newly elected the first Nepali American member of the President Obama advisory board Sanjita Pradhan and she has also offered us her reasonable support and empathy to this mission.
TPS is gaining an outstanding and historic momentum and we have been able to tap all available executive, legislative and diplomatic avenues. On top of that a new resolution has been introduced in the New York City Council. Native Haitian Council Member Mathieu Eugene was the sole sponsor of the resolution. TPS is a well-designed and privileged provision under the Immigration and Nationality Act and this provision can be offered to Nepali nationals for six to the eighteenth months of temporary protection, but the HR 2033 bill has been clearly asked for eighteenth months.
More than 90 Nepali existing and active organizations have agreed so far to work together for this TPS designation. Likewise more than 135 human rights and social rights organizations have also submitted a petition to the secretary of Homeland Security on May 5th, 2015. Likewise Honorable Nepali Ambassador to the United States Dr. Arjun K. Karke has already submitted a format letter to the Secretary of the Homeland Security Jeh Johnson on May 12th, 2015.
The New York Immigration Coalition is an umbrella policy and advocacy group has been planned to take action pushing through social media on Tuesday, May 26th, 2015 to rally behind the TPS designation to Nepal.
Our fellow Nepali sisters and brothers are working hand-on-hand to their capacity. We have also started signing the petition at the White house official page, “We the People.” It is been said that we should reach a goal of 100,000 but it is not mandatory based on the past practices so far we have collected close to the 12,000 signatures. Numbers always matter, so we must move towards the destination and keep our efforts going with utmost enthusiasm, confident, and resilience. Let us set up a new mileage and history of success and let's be ready to rejoice and celebrate: "YES WE DID IT".
Photo Courtesy: Ngima Pakhrin and Shyam Shrestha