UndocuBlack: Temporary Relief Comes to Somalis in the US


The news coverage of Somalia is continuously gloomy: famine and floods influenced by climate change and natural hazard and a never-ending civil war, public health outbreak and worsening humanitarian crisis…the list goes on.

Due to such harsh circumstances, many Somalis have been forced to flee their homes and the reality of going back home for many Somalis remains bleak as Somalia will continue to face serious, acute emergencies in the years to come. 

Somalia was first designated for TPS in 1991, amid ongoing warfare that broke out in the country three decades ago. 

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on July 19. 2021, re-designated Somalia in the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program, which allows some Somalis in the United States to work and live in the country. The designation for 18 months starts on Sept. 18., 2021, when the current designation was due to lapse.

Here are UndocuBlack Network’s five things to know about TPS for Somalia 

  • The extension means all current TPS holders for Somalia are able to keep their TPS and work permits until March 17, 2023. It also allows other Somali nationals who have been residing in the U.S. since July 19, 2021, to file for TPS for the first time.
  • Current TPS holders must re-register with DHS to extend their TPS during the 60-day registration period, starting on July 22, 2021, and ending on Sept. 20, 2021. Do not wait until your work permit expires to re-register for TPS!
  • New TPS applicants can register starting on July 22, 2021, through March 17, 2023.
  • USCIS also announced that, for the first time, new TPS applicants for Somalia can register for TPS and work permits online. New and current TPS applicants can also register or re-register for TPS using paper applications.
  • Visit the USCIS website to find out how to apply today!

Although some Somalis have been in the U.S since 1991 under the TPS program, not all of them are eligible to adjust their status to a permanent status, and this is why UndocuBlack Network and partnering immigration movement organizations are calling for a passage of a clean pathway to citizenship through the reconciliation package that would provide a pathway to citizenship for immigrant youth, people with Temporary Protected Status (TPS), farmworkers, and essential workers.

Follow UndocuBlack on our social media to get updated information on immigration policies and laws affecting Black undocumented communities. 

This content has been brought to you by UndocuBlack in partnership with TheHub.News.

UndocuBlack “is a multigenerational network of currently and formerly undocumented Black people that fosters community, facilitates access to resources, and contributes to transforming the realities of our people, so we are thriving and living our fullest lives.”

Follow @UndocuBlack on Twitter.

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