Senator Carper Meets with Salvadoran Delegation, Discusses Immigration and TPS for El Salvador

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), former chairman and ranking member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, released the following statement after meeting with Minister of Foreign Affairs of El Salvador Hugo Martinez, Salvadoran Ambassador to the United States Claudia Canjura, and a Congressional delegation from El Salvador.

“Just a few years ago, the world watched as an unprecedented number of unaccompanied minors arrived to the U.S. southern border after taking treacherous journeys from Central America through Mexico. Some, tragically, did not survive the two thousand-mile trek to seek asylum. Those children and young men and women were fleeing the violence and widespread organized crime that afflicts countries in the Northern Triangle, including El Salvador, partly because of our own country’s insatiable demand for deadly narcotics.

“Since then, El Salvador has been a valuable partner in helping the United States reduce the number of unaccompanied minors and migrants crossing our border with Mexico. While it’s still rebuilding from a devastating earthquake that crumbled not just its infrastructure, but its economy, El Salvador has been making progress to improve public safety and quality of life for its citizens. But there’s still work to be done – and El Salvador still needs leadership from the United States to keep making that progress.

“Now that the Trump Administration decided to abruptly end Temporary Protected Status designation for Salvadorans, the world is, again, watching. It’s not just our country’s moral obligation to help our neighbors in El Salvador, but it’s our economic imperative, which is why community and business leaders across the country are urging President Trump to show leadership and continue protections for Salvadorans. It’s the right thing to do.”

El Salvador has one of the largest number of Temporary Protected Status recipients living in the U.S., with 195,000 of the nearly 320,000 U.S. residents covered under the designation. In January, the Trump administration announced that it would end TPS protections for Salvadorans in the U.S., effective July 2019. Senator Carper led a letter with 27 U.S. senators urging Secretary Nielsen to reverse that decision