In response to the Biden administration's decision to extend and redesignate Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Yemenis living in the United States, Oxfam America's Global Policy Lead Noah Gottschalk said:
"Yemenis in the United States can breathe a little easier today. We celebrate with them, hearing that the Biden administration has extended and redesignated Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Yemen. These critical protections provide Yemeni families and communities the safety and refuge they need from the conflict, hunger, and instability in their birth country.
"While this is an important step by the United States, the Biden administration must do whatever it can to stop the ongoing conflict in Yemen. Conflict is only escalating along many frontlines, and the number of people experiencing famine-like conditions is expected to almost triple to 47,000 by July 2021. Water-borne diseases and the unchecked Covid-19 pandemic are compounding the hardship Yemenis are facing throughout the country.
"Oxfam was proud to join over 100 organizations in June calling for TPS extension and redesignation for Yemen.
"Since taking office, the Biden administration has made important steps to end support for the Saudi-led coalition's offensive operations in Yemen, but it still has a vital role to play in pushing for a sustainable, inclusive peace, and protecting vulnerable Yemenis. Oxfam continues to call on Congress to pass legislation granting Yemeni TPS holders permanent residency status and a path to citizenship so they can continue to safely live and work in the US without fear of returning to the devastating conditions in Yemen."
Zaid Nagi, President of the American Yemeni Group in New York, said:
“The America we know protects vulnerable people who came to this country because they believed in the promise of freedom and safety. As the United States celebrated Independence Day this weekend, the Biden administration must remember that thousands of hopeful Yemenis risked their entire lives and livelihoods to come to this country. They sold belongings, made the treacherous journey here through war-torn countries, and put everything on the line because they believed that the US would welcome them, as it has done with others who come here seeking refuge.
"While Temporary Protected Status for Yemen remains vital, the Biden administration needs to apply the same logic to Yemenis and others who won the Visa Lottery but have been caught in legal limbo after their visas were then denied. For America to stay America, the Biden administration must act now and fulfill promises that were given to Visa Lottery winners so that they, too, can one day celebrate the freedom and safety Americans celebrate every July 4th.”