Washington, DC | www.adc.org | April 22, 2015 - As a result of the increase in violence plaguing Yemen, this afternoon the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), along with the National Association of Yemeni Americans (NAYA), the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Yemeni American Association (YAA), the Yemeni American Benevolent Association (YABA), and the Yemeni American Civil Rights Coalition (YACRC), have filed a formal petition with Department of Homeland Security requesting that Temporary Protected Status (TPS) be granted to Yemeni nationals currently present in the United States. Due to the worsening humanitarian situation on the ground in Yemen and the mounting number of deaths, it has become eminently clear that the forced return of civilians poses a grave threat to their personal safety.
Under 8 U.S.C. § 1254a, the Department of Homeland Security may designate any foreign state or part of a foreign state for Temporary Protected Status if there is ongoing armed conflict within the state and, due to the conflict, requiring the return of nationals to that state or part of a state would pose a serious threat to their personal safety. The facts presented in the petition make it clear that the ongoing conflict in Yemen has made the country unsafe, and the conditions pose a serious threat to the personal safety of those forced to return.
Given the current circumstances in Yemen, it is a certainty that any national who returns will face grave repercussions upon their return to Yemen due to their political beliefs and positions, not to mention the general risk to them posed by the current hostilities. By granting the TPS request, the U.S. government will be providing protection to thousands of Yemeni nationals currently in the U.S.
Granting the TPS request is the morally correct thing to do, and at the same time it also offers the U.S. government a proactive measure to directly assist innocent civilians. The TPS designation does not result in a permanent stay for the nationals; rather it is a temporary relief. A TPS designation will allow nationals of Yemen to remain in the U.S. on a temporary basis until the violence ends or subsides.
In 2012 ADC, along with a coalition of civil and human rights organizations, submitted a similar petition requesting that Syria be designated for TPS. That petition was approved and to date thousands of Syrian nationals in the U.S. have applied for, and received, protective status. ADC is encouraging and calling upon the U.S. to support similar action for Yemen.
The ADC Legal Department is providing assistance to nationals of Yemen in the U.S. who are seeking immigration assistance. For questions pertaining to TPS, or other immigration matters, please contact the ADC Legal Department to email@example.com; or by phone, 202-244-2990.