More than 124,000 Venezuelans have asked President Donald Trump to approve the Temporary Protection Status (TPS) for immigrants from that South American nation with “urgency” in the face of “the threat of an emerging dictatorship in Venezuela.”
“Unless Venezuela is designated for TPS, the negative impact on Venezuelan citizens who have lost or will fall outside their legal status will be unmeasured,” said Adriana Kostencki, president of the Venezuelan National Association of Lawyers Americans (Venambar, in English).
On July 28, Venambar filed an official online petition through “We the People,” a tool on the White House website, in which Venezuelans asked President Trump and National Security Secretary Elaine Duke, Authorize the TPS.
The organization said that within two weeks, Venezuelans had already surpassed 100,000 signatures needed to receive an official response from the White House within the next two months.
Kostencki said he fears the legal limbo in which Venezuelans would remain “because of their fear of returning to a country that is struggling with a totalitarian and socialist regime, social unrest, violent crime, and a great shortage of food and medicines.”
Venambar said that thousands of Venezuelans “fear returning to Venezuela” due to fear of personal security and violations of the Venezuelan Constitution and the electoral process.
“It is in the national interest of the United States that Venezuela be designated for Temporary Protection Status,” said the Miami-based organization.
The group requested a TPS for a period of one and a half years for “eligible Venezuelan citizens (currently in the United States),” noting that the Venezuelan government “is not responding to the crisis that the South American country is going through” .
They lamented that “social unrest has increased at a rapid pace and protests against the government have resulted in thousands of Venezuelans and opposition leaders of the government of Nicolás Maduro being detained today.”
However, Venambar clarified that this is a temporary benefit that does not lead to legal permanent resident status or confer any other immigration status, however, he added, that registering with TPS does not prevent applying for “nonimmigrant status.”
The legal group recalled that the TPS applies to an ongoing armed conflict (civil war), a natural disaster (an earthquake or hurricane) or an epidemic, and other extraordinary and temporary conditions.
Venezuelans in the United States “have made very positive contributions to the US economy, and a large number of Venezuelans in this country today hold key positions in the areas of management, business, science, and the arts. , And even within a variety of industries.”