New York, NY—In response to the earthquake that has devastated Türkiye and Syria and taken more than 3,000 lives, the New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC) called for an immediate designation of Temporary Protected Status (TPS), Deferred Enforced Departure (DED), and Special Student Relief (SSR) for Turkish people in the United States, and for further extending and redesignating TPS for Syrian people. Additionally, the NYIC demanded the provision of work permits and protection from deportation for Turkish and Syrian noncitizens who cannot be safely returned to their home countries, including over 200 DACA Turkish and Syrian recipients and nearly 9,000 F-1 Turkish and Syrian international students. These readily available protections should always be used as both humanitarian and foreign policy tools in the face of natural disaster.
Murad Awawdeh, Executive Director, New York Immigration Coalition:
“We have all witnessed the horror of the devastating earthquake that has already claimed more than 3,000 lives across Türkiye and Syria yesterday, as people continue to desperately search for some sort of safety for themselves and their families. But America can and must do more than bear witness to the tragedy unfolding across Türkiye and Syria. Washington can start with an immediate 18-month designation of TPS, DED, and SSR for the eligible Turkish and Syrian people in the U.S. The New York Immigration Coalition urges the Biden administration to provide safety and sanctuary to the civilians fleeing the catastrophic destruction in Türkiye and Syria by taking immediate action to provide humanitarian relief.”