TPS para Guatemaltecos en los EEUU

July  9, 2010

 

Ms. Janet Napolitano

Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Washington, DC 20528

 

Dear Secretary Napolitano:

 

We write once again to ask for your full support of the request formulated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Guatemala, and submitted to the Government of the United States on June 4, 2010, requesting that Guatemalans living in the United States be granted a Temporary Protected Status (TPS), we urge you to respond positively to this request as soon as possible.


Torrential rains caused by Tropical Storm Agatha that struck Central America and southern Mexico the last week of May, seriously affected Guatemala, with loss of life, widespread damage to infrastructure and agriculture farming losses.


A preliminary study conducted by the Human Rights Ombudsman (PDH) indicates that the reconstruction would cost about 3,800 million Quetzales ($475 million), in addition the cost to build new housing requires about 500 million Quetzales ($62.5 million) and maintenance of shelters for at least six months would involve an investment of 360 million Quetzales ($45 million), according to the PDH.


The National Coordination for Disaster Reduction (CONRED) said that the death toll from the storm Agatha is 172, 101 missing and 148 wounded. The total number of people affected by this natural phenomenon amounts to 344,814 victims, 79,535 people directly affected, those living in high risk are 126,813, 98,339 people are living in 442 shelters that were opened in 20 departments affected by the storm.


The Ministry of Communications reports that 24 bridges collapsed and 19 others are damaged, while the Ministry of Education accounts for 1,228 schools with severe damages, while 7,597 houses were totally destroyed and another 38,864 were damaged.


Guatemala is still under a public state of emergency declared by President Alvaro Colom, to be able to care for the hundreds of thousands of people affected by the storm. According to the CONRED, humanitarian aid, which has been provided by the international community and Guatemalans, continues to be moved to the affected areas.

 

As you are well aware, Guatemalan communities and citizens here in the United States send more than $4 billion a year in remittances that help maintain social stability and provide basic needs to relatives in Guatemala. These remittances take on added importance while Guatemala recovers from the storm. We recall that when TPS has been granted in the past to nationals of other countries, remittances immediately increased by not less than 25%. This would amount to the most significant aid to recovery and reconstruction, and it would be provided by our own nationals.

 

 

Therefore, until the country can get back on its feet, we believe that granting Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Guatemalans in the United States will help to ameliorate the desperate situation of those victims that may benefit from funds sent by relatives in the United States. We also believe that it is in the interest of this country not to return people so soon after this natural disaster, because that action may generate further instability in a country where poverty was already very high before the storm. Such a grant would certainly not be without precedent, as Nicaraguans and Hondurans were granted Temporary Protected Status after suffering widespread destruction from Hurricane Mitch in 1998.

 

We believe that the conditions that justify this request for TPS %u2013a significant calamity in a country, high risks for nationals of that country if they are forced to return, and an official appeal from the government of the affected country%u2014have been satisfied. Therefore, we strongly support granting TPS to Guatemalans, and we ask that you give this request your most serious consideration.

 

Sincerely,

 


CC: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

Attorney General Erick Holder

Ms. Janet Napolitano
Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Washington, DC 20528

 

Dear Secretary Napolitano:

We write once again to ask for your full support of the request formulated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Guatemala, and submitted to the Government of the United States on June 4, 2010, requesting that Guatemalans living in the United States be granted a Temporary Protected Status (TPS), we urge you to respond positively to this request as soon as possible.

Torrential rains caused by Tropical Storm Agatha that struck Central America and southern Mexico the last week of May, seriously affected Guatemala, with loss of life, widespread damage to infrastructure and agriculture farming losses.

A preliminary study conducted by the Human Rights Ombudsman (PDH) indicates that the reconstruction would cost about 3,800 million Quetzales ($475 million), in addition the cost to build new housing requires about 500 million Quetzales ($62.5 million) and maintenance of shelters for at least six months would involve an investment of 360 million Quetzales ($45 million), according to the PDH.

The National Coordination for Disaster Reduction (CONRED) said that the death toll from the storm Agatha is 172, 101 missing and 148 wounded. The total number of people affected by this natural phenomenon amounts to 344,814 victims, 79,535 people directly affected, those living in high risk are 126,813, 98,339 people are living in 442 shelters that were opened in 20 departments affected by the storm.

The Ministry of Communications reports that 24 bridges collapsed and 19 others are damaged, while the Ministry of Education accounts for 1,228 schools with severe damages, while 7,597 houses were totally destroyed and another 38,864 were damaged.

Guatemala is still under a public state of emergency declared by President Alvaro Colom, to be able to care for the hundreds of thousands of people affected by the storm. According to the CONRED, humanitarian aid, which has been provided by the international community and Guatemalans, continues to be moved to the affected areas.

As you are well aware, Guatemalan communities and citizens here in the United States send more than $4 billion a year in remittances that help maintain social stability and provide basic needs to relatives in Guatemala. These remittances take on added importance while Guatemala recovers from the storm. We recall that when TPS has been granted in the past to nationals of other countries, remittances immediately increased by not less than 25%. This would amount to the most significant aid to recovery and reconstruction, and it would be provided by our own nationals.

Therefore, until the country can get back on its feet, we believe that granting Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Guatemalans in the United States will help to ameliorate the desperate situation of those victims that may benefit from funds sent by relatives in the United States. We also believe that it is in the interest of this country not to return people so soon after this natural disaster, because that action may generate further instability in a country where poverty was already very high before the storm. Such a grant would certainly not be without precedent, as Nicaraguans and Hondurans were granted Temporary Protected Status after suffering widespread destruction from Hurricane Mitch in 1998.

We believe that the conditions that justify this request for TPS %u2013a significant calamity in a country, high risks for nationals of that country if they are forced to return, and an official appeal from the government of the affected country%u2014have been satisfied. Therefore, we strongly support granting TPS to Guatemalans, and we ask that you give this request your most serious consideration.

Sincerely,

 

CC: Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Attorney General Erick Holder

Sign Petition

privacy policy

By signing, you accept Care2's terms of service.

Having problems signing this? Let us know.