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Nearly half a million Venezuelans in the US will receive temporary deportation relief and work permits.
The US government announced on Wednesday a policy to grant 472,000 Venezuelans who were in the US on or before July 31 Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for a period of 18 months. This move comes as an addition to the 243,000 Venezuelans already beneficiaries of the TPS due to a 2021 designation that was renewed last year.
The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) justified this extension, citing “Venezuela’s increased instability and lack of safety.” This decision is a response to the significant surge in Venezuelans fleeing the economic and political chaos in their homeland and arriving in the US in recent years.
The DHS’s plan not only facilitates Venezuelan immigrants but also aims to streamline operations by extending the validity of work permits for some migrants, including asylum seekers, to five years, thereby allowing the government to prioritize the processing of new applications.
This comes as the Border Patrol has reported an uptick in illegal crossings along the southern border. To assist Border Patrol agents, the Pentagon plans to deploy an additional 800 active-duty troops to the border, supplementing the efforts of the 2,500 National Guard troops currently stationed there.