Soon after the earthquake, the Obama administration announced that undocumented Haitians in the US would receive temporary protective status. This means the immigrants can live and work freely in the US for eighteen months. This created a firestorm of debate. One critic, Representative Steve King, said that Haitians, if deported, would be great assets as relief workers in Haiti. In opposition, these workers earning a sufficient wage in the US and sending it back to Haiti would likely be much more beneficial in a rebuilding process. Critics, like Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration studies (which should really be named the Center for Anti-immigration Studies), also say the TPS often ends us being not so temporary .
An interesting condition of TPS is that you must pay a fee to register , which ranges from $50-470 depending on the age of the individual (you can apply for a fee waiver). Here is an interesting article about a legal center set up in Brooklyn to help immigrants with the registration process: For Haitians in NY, Applying for Protected Status Encouraging – but Expensive . Here is another article about scammers taking advantage of the temporary status: Scammers Prey on Haitians .
How great of an impact does this process have on people attaining the temporary status. Where will Haitians be better able to aid the situation? Is temporary protective status a good policy?