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Renewal of program that benefits Haitian immigrants in doubt

People immigrate to Riverside County from many different countries and for many different reasons. Sometimes, conditions in their native countries force people to seek residence elsewhere. That is precisely what happened to tens of thousands of people from Haiti after a devastating earthquake rocked the country in 2010.

According to AOL, many of the Haitians that came to the U.S. following the earthquake were granted temporary protected status, which prevents them from being deported. There are currently 58,000 people from Haiti who hold this classification.

After multiple past renewals by the Obama administration, the program is now up for renewal by the Trump administration in coming weeks, reports ABC News. Some are quick to point out the Haitian government is not in a position to accept these people back. Plus, many of those who have been living in the U.S. have become taxpayers and parents to U.S.-born children. If they are forced to leave, the government would almost certainly take a financial hit.

It has also been reported that the Trump administration is undertaking criminal background checks of those Haitians with temporary protected status as it decides whether or not to renew program. Also being investigated, is whether there are any people who have illegally received public benefits.

Those in favor of revoking the status argue that the conditions in Haiti have recovered enough that those in the U.S. no longer need a special status to prevent deportation. Further, they point out that the problems that exist in the country today, such as poor health conditions, lack of wealth and poor infrastructure, were around for decades prior to the earthquake.

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