María Ponce,, 202-394-2139

Issued November 17, 2021

SEIU’s Sáenz: On One Year Anniversary of Eta and Iota, BidenAdministration Must Grant New Temporary Protected Status

WASHINGTON, DC — Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Executive Vice President Rocio Sáenz made the following statement on the one year anniversary of hurricanes Eta and Iota that wiped out entire communities and the economies of four Central American countries, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Nicaragua:

“Working families from Central America are our co-workers, friends, and neighbors, who deserve to live with dignity and peace of mind that they won’t be forced to abandon their homes and everything they have worked for here in the U.S. and sent back to countries that are still reeling from the devastation of two hurricanes. That’s why we urge the Biden Administration to immediately re-designate Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and Nicaragua for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). Doing so will protect the fragile infrastructure of these countries, enabling them to recover faster, while at the same time providing relief to families that have contributed so much to our nation’s well-being. 

“Many of these families were told by our government that they were essential workers during the height of the pandemic and showed up despite the risks to themselves and their families. They cleaned our office buildings to ensure we were all healthy and safe; cleaned and secured our airports to ensure travelers felt safe while traveling; took care of our loved ones and home and health care workers; and much more.  They deserve nothing less than action and relief now.”