After much waiting and concern by immigration advocates, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary John Kelly finally issued a statement on May 22, 2017 containing the U.S. government's decision to extend Haiti's Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designation for an additional six-month period.
The TPS designation was originally put into place due to the chaos and unsafe conditions following the 2010 earthquake in that country. However, Secretary Kelly asserts, "Haiti has made progress across several fronts since the devastating earthquake."
Although better than no extension, the six-month grant came as a disappointment to many who were hoping for the 18-month extension that is more standard for TPS. In essence, it amounts to a sort of grace period, giving people from Haiti who currently hold TPS time in which to make travel arrangements and depart.
The extension becomes effective on July 23, 2017 and goes through January 22, 2018.
DHS does plan to reevaluate the TPS designation for Haiti one more time before its final expiration in 2018, and could possibly extend it again at that time.