On Monday, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas announced that the Biden administration will extend Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 more months to nearly 3,300 Burmese nationals living in the United States.
“Under this extension and redesignation, Burmese nationals and habitual residents will be eligible to temporarily stay in the United States until conditions in the country improve and individuals can safely return,” Mayorkas said in a statement.
The TPS extension means nearly 1,000 current Burmese beneficiaries will be able to remain in the United States through May 2024, while another nearly 2,300 Burmese may become eligible for the status.
Mayorkas first opened TPS for Burmese nationals last year as hundreds of thousands of foreign nationals, who would otherwise be deportable, take advantage of the status, including about 343,000 Venezuelans.
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TPS serves as a quasi-amnesty for foreign nationals, created under the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1990 (INA), that prevents deportations for those from countries experiencing famine, war, or natural disasters.
Since the Clinton administration, TPS has been transformed into a de facto amnesty program as the Clinton, Bush, Obama, Trump, and now Biden administrations have continuously renewed the program for a variety of countries.
As of 2021, more than 400,000 foreign nationals live in the United States on TPS status.