Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly will extend amnesty to approximately 60,000 Haitians for an additional six months, government officials announced Monday.
Temporary Protected Status (TPS) was given to Haitians in the U.S. after the 2010 earthquake that hit the Caribbean nation.
Haiti is one of 13 nations that receive the designation. Recipients are awarded protection from deportation, access to a driver’s license, work permit, social security card, and some welfare benefits from states.
The DHS officials said that while the TPS status will be extended until Jan 22, 2018, recipients should get their affairs in order, including getting travel documentation from their government. The extension was based on continuing poor conditions from the earthquake, but a senior DHS official said he anticipates these will change and get better in six months.