Kriti Agrawal –
U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously that thousands of people residing in the United States for humanitarian reasons are unable to apply for permanent residency.
According to Justice Elena Kagan’s dissenting opinion, federal immigration law prevents a person who entered the country illegally and now have Temporary Protected Status from applying for ‘green cards’ to stay in the nation permanently.
People who come from war-torn or disaster-stricken countries are eligible for the distinction. It keeps them from being deported and permits them to work legally. TPS status is granted to 400,000 persons from 12 nations.
Justice Kagan said, “The TPS program grants non-immigrant status to foreign nationals but does not admit them. So, granting TPS does not make an illegal entry qualified for a green card.”
President Joe Biden stated his support for the legal change. However, like the Trump administration, his administration maintained that current immigration law does not allow anyone who entered the country illegally to qualify for permanent status.
Immigrant groups noted that many persons who immigrated to the United States for humanitarian reasons had remained in the country for many years, given birth to American citizens, and established roots in the country.
Federal Courts across the country had issued conflicting rulings on whether the issuance of TPS status was sufficient in and of itself to allow an immigrant to apply for permanent residency.
Following a series of earthquakes in their home country, the United States granted Salvadoran migrants legal protection to remain in the country in 2001.
According to Kagan’s judgment, it does not affect immigrants with TPS who entered the United States legitimately and subsequently, say, overstayed their visa. They can apply to become permanent residents because they were legally admitted to the nation and then granted humanitarian protections.