In response to the decision of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to allow the termination of temporary protected status (TPS) for four countries, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka issued the following statement:
As a result of this ruling, hundreds of thousands of working men and women, many of whom are on the front lines fighting the virus, find their lives and livelihoods at unacceptable risk. Our entire workforce has benefited from TPS, and we will all be harmed if these vital workers are needlessly stripped of their status.
President Trump’s decision to end TPS was cruel and wrong, and its harmful impact will be even greater amid this pandemic. We are disappointed that the court allowed the termination of protections that have helped to raise wages, support a stable workforce and reduce exploitation in our country.
The COVID-19 pandemic threatens everyone in our country and reveals just how interconnected we really are. Today’s court ruling further destabilizes our workforce and worsens already dangerous gaps in coverage for immigrant workers in our nation’s COVID response. Congress must take immediate steps to protect TPS holders and their families. We call with renewed urgency on officials at all levels of government to ensure that all workers, regardless of immigration status, have access to medical testing and treatment; meaningful safety supports when we are reporting to work; and income replacement, cash payments and other vital benefits when our livelihoods are disrupted. We are all in this together, and none of us will be safe until all of us are safe.
Dismantling TPS is a direct attack on union members and union values that only strengthens our resolve to overcome racial divisions and demand changes to a system rigged to benefit the wealthiest and corporations.
Contact: Gonzalo Salvador (202) 637-5018