Haitian nationals, including those who arrived illegally, residing in the United States prior to the 7.0 earthquake on Jan. 12, 2010 can remain in the country through Jan. 22, 2013.
Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano today announced the extension of Temporary Protected Status for Haitian nationals living in Charlotte and across the United States.
Currently, approximately 48,000 Haitian nationals with TPS reside in the United States. According to the Census, 370 Haitians live in Mecklenburg County, but members of the community say the numbers are really in the thousands.
Temporary protected status is granted by the Homeland Security agency in cases of emergencies to allow people from a nation torn by war or disaster to receive temporary safe haven in the United States until the US government deems that it is safe for them to return.
“In the extended aftermath of the devastating earthquakes in Haiti, the United States has remained fully committed to upholding our responsibility to assist individuals affected by this tragedy by using tools available under the law,” said Secretary Napolitano. “Providing a temporary refuge for Haitian nationals who are currently in the United States and whose personal safety would be endangered by returning to Haiti is part of this administration’s continuing efforts to support Haiti’s recovery.”