Herring joins coalition urging Supreme Court to protect rights of Temporary Protected Status holders

Mark Herring_58352

Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring speaks to reporters outside the Arlington County Courthouse in Arlington, Va., Monday, Oct. 6, 2014, following a Supreme Court decision rejecting gay marriage appeals from 5 states. The Supreme Court cleared the way Monday for an immediate expansion of same-sex marriage by unexpectedly and tersely turning away appeals from five […]

RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) — Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring has joined several attorneys general in filing an amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court to support the rights of nearly 400,000 Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders in the United States.

In some cases, a TPS allows foreign nationals from countries experiencing humanitarian crises to live and work in the United States.

Herring’s representatives say Virginia is home to thousands of TPS holders.

“This nation was built by immigrants coming to this country to find a better life for themselves and their families and we cannot turn our back on those values,” said Herring. “The Commonwealth is home to tens of thousands of TPS holders, who came to Virginia seeking refuge and safety and who have since put down roots here, raised their families here, and become valued members of their communities. I will do everything I can to make sure that these hardworking Virginians are given the opportunity to become permanent residents.”

The amicus brief, filed in Sanchez v. Mayorkas, supports a married couple from El Salvador seeking to adjust their immigration status from TPS to lawful permanent residence. After having their application denied, they sued to repeal the United States and Immigration Services’ decision.

In their brief, Herring argues says should reject the Third Circuit’s reading of federal law as contrary to Congress’ intent when crafting it, which was that TPS holders should have a ready path to permanent residency and then citizenship.

The brief states that every six to 18 months, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security decides whether to terminate TPS designations. Without a viable path to permanent residency status, Herring says many TPS holders live in constant fear of losing their protected status and being uprooted from their homes and families in the United States.

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