TPS for Ecuador Organizational Sign-On Letter

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June 17, 2016

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear President Obama,

On behalf of the many groups signing below, we write today to request that you take action on providing Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Ecuadorians residing in the United States in response to the devastating earthquake of April 16, 2016. Given the terrible destruction caused by the earthquake, Ecuadorians need every avenue of relief, both from governments and from their families and friends residing in the U.S.

The magnitude 7.8 earthquake was the worse natural disaster to strike Ecuador in seventy years—663 dead, over 6,000 injured, and approximately 73,000 internally displaced persons. UNICEF has reported at least 250,000 children impacted and the UN has reported 720,000 individuals are in need of humanitarian assistance. But that is only the beginning of this tragedy. The vast destruction of local water systems, over 550 schools, and 10,000 buildings, including vital infrastructure, will mean that providing lifesaving assistance to communities and families will be a difficult and long process.

There are about 131,000 undocumented Ecuadorians living and working in the United States, the largest communities in New York, Florida, and New Jersey. It is clear that in moments of humanitarian crisis, these communities living in the U.S. can play a crucial role to support their families and loved ones back home, and help in rebuilding. However, to date, about 1,200 individuals are deported to Ecuador each year, not only eliminating an emergency source of funds, but also creating a burden on families, localities, and the international emergency response. A grant of TPS can resolve this issue immediately by empowering thousands of Ecuadorians that live and work in the U.S. to play a crucial role in the response, to send assistance to their families, and furthermore, not to create unnecessary burdens on the emergency response.

We ask that, through the Department of Homeland Security, you take action to provide TPS, as well as other forms of relief available, to Ecuadorians in the U.S. like Haiti in 2010 and Nepal in 2015, this is Ecuador’s time of need, and we hope that you will empower those Ecuadorians living and working in the U.S. to play a vital role for their loved ones back home.


[Your Organization Here]

Mr. Jeh Johnson, Secretary of Homeland Security
Mr. John Kerry, Secretary of State
Ms. Susan Rice, National Security Advisor
Ms. Cecilia Muñoz, Domestic Policy Advisor
Mr. Leon Rodriguez, Director of USCIS

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