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Posts Tagged ‘TPS’

Guatemala Has Renewed Its TPS Request

Wednesday, September 28th, 2011

Our thanks go out to one of our commenters, Pablo, for sharing a link to a Univision story covering Guatemala’s renewal of its TPS request. In short, the Guatemalan government has asked that last year’s request for Temporary Protected Status be revived in light of the recent disasters that have hit the country.

This year’s earthquakes and other disasters have put an incredible strain on an already-struggling country, leading to a humanitarian crisis. In these conditions, it is perfectly reasonable for the United States to extend the most basic immigration relief to Guatemalan nationals already here.

While we have been down this road before (just last year), hope springs eternal, and we can pray that the upcoming election will have a positive effect on TPS’s chances this time around.

US Congress Considers TPS for Pakistan (but not Guatemala)

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

US Congressman Al Green (D-Texas) introduced a new bill yesterday to grant TPS to Pakistan following the dramatic floods that struck that country this summer.  While we certainly support the bill (indeed, the link above is to our sister blog, which dedicated to the Pakistani TPS request), we have to express our disappointment that the Guatemalan request has not seen the same kind of Congressional support.

The only Congressional action in support of Guatemala’s request has been House Resolution 1462, which was introduced in June and has been languishing in silence since July. The resolution is quite different from today’s bill, in that it is merely an expression of support for the people of Guatemala and not an actual law granting TPS.  It is incredible that our Congress was unable to pass even this meek resolution, and that it has stood by so silently with no action in support of Guatemala.

Colom / Obama Meeting Not Happening?

Thursday, November 18th, 2010

We recently posted news of an apparent planned meeting between Presidents Obama and Colom.  Since that time, we have been trying to confirm whether this meeting will actually happen, or whether it is merely a possible event with little chance of occuring. Unfortunately, our research to date appears to indicate the former – that there is no meeting scheduled between the two presidents during the SICA meeting in the Dominican Republic next month.  Indeed, it appears unlikely that President Obama will even be at the SICA summit.

Of course, we are not privy to the President’s actual plans, and it is entirely possible that such a meeting is in fact scheduled. But it is increasingly unlikely that Mr. Obama will make the trip to the Dominican Republic.  As always, stay tuned for more news!

Colom para Reunirse con Obama para Descutir el TPS

Thursday, November 11th, 2010

El 11 de noviembre de 2010,

El Presidente de Guatemala, Alvaro Colom, está programado para reunirse con el Presidente Obama y discutir la solicitud de su país para el TPS. La reunión está programada para la primera parte de diciembre durante una cumbre en la República Dominicana, de acuerdo con un informe publicado por Prensa Libre.  Regulares de este blog recordarán que hemos mencionado la posibilidad de esta reunión un tiempo atrás, pero no hemos podido obtener mucho para confirmarlo hasta ahora.

Esta es una noticia excitante, y da crédito a la sugerencia de que el liderazgo de guatemalteco había sido intencionalmente tranquilo sobre este tema durante la temporada de elecciones del E.E.U.U.  Ahora que las elecciones están detrás de nosotros, es probable que la administración de Colom vea una ventana estrecha durante el cual podrá concederse la solicitud TPS.  Manténgase en contacto para más noticias.

Colom to Meet with Obama to Discuss TPS

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

Guatemalan President Alvaro Colom is scheduled to meet with president Obama and discuss his country’s request for TPS. The meeting is scheduled for the first part of December during a summit in the Dominican Republic, according to a report posted a few minutes ago by Prensa Libre.  Regular readers of this blog may recall that we mentioned the possibility of this meeting a while back, but we have been unable to obtain much in the way of confirmation until now.

This is exciting news, and it lends credence to the suggestion that the Guatemalan leadership had been intentionally quiet on this topic during the US election season. Now that the elections are behind us, it is likely that the Colom administration sees a narrow window during which the TPS request may be granted.  Stay tuned for more news.

President Colom Did Not Press TPS In Call With Obama

Saturday, October 9th, 2010

Many of you have noticed that our site has stayed quiet for the last week on the biggest story in US-Guatemalan relations; the discovery that US researchers, with help from Guatemalan health officials, intentionally infected Guatemalan prisoners with Syphilis.  Our decision to not report on this issue was a difficult one, but it was intentional, as we felt that the story had little to do with either TPS or immigration in general.  Still, we held some hope that either the Obama or Colom administration would use this opportunity to press home the other main issue in US-Guatemalan relations: TPS.

Unfortunately, this does not seem to be the case. Prensa Libre recently reported that President Colom has clearly stated that TPS did not come up during his recent conversation with President Obama.  The conversation occurred when Mr. Obama called Mr. Colom to formally apologize for the abhorrent research. Very little detail was given on the content of the call, and there was some speculation that President Colom may have asked that some progress be made on the TPS issue. However, the Guatemalan president’s statement on the issue makes it clear that this was not the case.

We keenly understand the sensitive nature of international relations, and would not presume to judge what one president should say to another, especially at such a delicate time. We do, however, hope that both sides considered the elephant in the room, even if nobody mentioned it explicitly.

City of Chicago Committee on Human Relations Supports Guatemalan TPS

Saturday, October 9th, 2010

On October 1, the Chicago City Council’s Committee on Human Relations voted in support of the Guatemalan TPS Request. Specifcially, the Committee voted in support of a resolution presented by Alderman Roberto Maldonado, of the City’s 26th Ward.  The resolution calls upon President Obama to grant the TPS request on humanitarian grounds, and this vote is yet another example of the growing political support on all levels of the US political world.  After passing through the Committee, the resolution was passed to the whole Council, which voted on the matter on October 6.  The results of that voted have not been posted on the City Council’s site yet, but we will update this post as soon as we hear something. If any of our readers were present at the Oct 6 Chicago City Council meeting and can tell us how the vote went, please drop us a line at Guatemala@Kolasinski-Law.com

While some people may question the significance of a City Council resolution, we’re not dealing with just any city here.  In addition to being one of America’s largest cities, Chicago is the adopted home of President Obama and is the place where he started his political career.  Chicago plays such an important role in the current administration that White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel just resigned his position so that he can run for Mayor of Chicago. So, there’s a very good chance that this vote will have some impact on President Obama’s decision.  Of course, it is still quite unlikely that we will have a final verdict before the upcoming election.

Progress on TPS: McFarland Sends Report to Washington

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

U.S. Ambassador to Guatemala Stephen McFarland submitted a report to Washington on the effects of Tropical Storm Agatha and the volcanic eruption this spring.  While the report itself is not available at the moment, the fact that the report was submitted is a clear indication that progress is being made on the TPS request, and that the Obama administration has not completely forgotten about Guatemala.

The report follows a visit by Ambassador McFarland to San Lucas Tolimán, which was seriously impacted by Agatha. About 120 families are still without permanent shelter there, with rebuilding efforts being led by USAID and the local Catholic diocese. The official story on Ambassador McFarland’s visit to San Lucas is available here (in English) and here (in Spanish).

The submission of the report is a good sign for everyone awaiting TPS, and will hopefully lead to more progress on the request.  It is still unlikely that a final decision will be reached before November, but November keeps getting closer, so news like this is certainly a positive sign.

U.S. Honors Guatemalan Independence Day, Still No Word on TPS

Monday, September 13th, 2010

U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton has issued a statement congratulating Guatemala on the 189th anniversary of its independence.  The statement recognizes “the great contributions” made by the Guatemalan community in the United States, and reiterated the “close partnership” between the people of the two nations. In addition, Secretary Clinton took the opportunity to highlight the Pathways to Prosperity Initiative and the Central American Regional Security Initiatives, two U.S. programs that provide assistance to Guatemala.

However, the statement is silent on the one U.S.-Guatemalan issue of greatest interest to readers of this blog (and to that greatly-contributing Guatemalan community in general). The issue is, of course, the matter of TPS. While Secretary Clinton did wish “a happy independence day and a prosperous year,” and noted that she “look[s] forward to continuing the partnership between our countries,” she made no mention of the recent natural disasters, or of the outstanding request for Temporary Protected Status.

There has, unfortunately, been nothing but silence on the issue for months now, and it appears highly unlikely that we will get any real news before November.  With election season in full swing and a raft of other issues on the President’s plate, it is hard to imagine any immediate movement on this issue. The primary hope for the many members of the Guatmalan diaspora anxiously awaiting word on this most pressing of matters is that something positive will come out of the scheduled November meeting between presidents Obama and Colom.

New Analysis Supports TPS for Guatemala

Monday, September 6th, 2010

Eurasia Review , an online news and analysis magazine, has published an article by Carly Steinberger, who writes for the Council for Hemispheric Affairs. Carly’s analysis compares the situation in Guatemala with that of the Central American countries that have been granted TPS, and comes to the same conclusion as Senator John Kerry, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, and just about everyone else who has looked at this issue: Guatemala should be granted TPS.

It is always encouraging to read about new support for the TPS request, and we can only hope that this latest bit of analysis will be yet another weight that pushes the scales in Guatemala’s favor.  Stayed tuned for additional news.

P.S. Carly’s article was reprinted by EnerPub, a syndication site primarily focused on energy-related news.