Attorney General Aaron Ford joined a coalition of state attorneys general Thursday urging Congress to pass legislation protecting foreign nationals who face possible deportation after the U.S. Department of Homeland Security terminated their federal Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designations.
Before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, Ford is among 22 attorneys general, filed a friend-of-the-court brief in Ramo v. Nielson a federal case which terminated TPS designations for Haiti, El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Sudan.
“Nevada is home to more than 4,000 Temporary Protected Status holders who are working, contributing members of our community at large,” said Ford in a statement, adding that his office “will continue to prioritize the safety and well-being of our families.”
In October, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California halted the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from terminating TPS for Sudan, Nicaragua, Haiti, and El Salvador, while the case makes its way through the legal system. But the status of TPS holders remains uncertain after DHS filed an appeal to overturn the districts court order.
States represented in the brief argue that, collectively, they are home to hundreds of thousands of people who hold TPS, and compose seven of the top ten states holding over 58 percent of TPS recipients in the country.
“TPS holders are nurses, roofers, pastors, chefs, bus drivers, teachers, landscapers, and child care providers. They are homeowners, business owners, union members, class presidents, and civic leaders. They are our neighbors, coworkers, family members, and friends,” reads the brief.
The brief argues that TPS terminations will harm public health and strain state resources by causing employees to lose work authorization, thus losing employer-sponsored health insurance for themselves and their families.
In the brief, the states also argue that vulnerable residents who depend on TPS holders for in-home care will suffer disruption to their health care, as would child care facilities, nursing homes, home healthcare companies, and hospitals.
Millions of dollars in public revenue TPS holders pay in taxes would decline and the risk of public safety would rise, according to the brief, arguing that former TPS holders and their families will be less likely to report a crime after they lose their legal status, even if they are victims.
The states argue that the district court’s decision to enter the preliminary injunction on a nationwide basis was warranted because of the widespread harms that rescinding TPS would cause to the economy and the nations workforce, especially the “construction, hospitality, food service, landscaping, home health care, childcare, and retail industries.”
Ford joined the District of Columbia and the following states in the brief: Massachusetts, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawai’i, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.