Posts tagged with "Trump Administration"

TPS Holders Sue Trump Administration

Six adults with Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and two U.S. citizen children of TPS holders filed a class-action lawsuit today seeking to stop the unlawful termination of TPS for over 100,000 TPS holders from Honduras and Nepal and prevent the separation of tens of thousands of U.S. citizen children from their TPS-holder parents. The suit was filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. Plaintiffs are represented by the ACLU Foundation of Southern California and ACLU Foundation of Northern California in the release, Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Asian Law Caucus, Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Los Angeles, the National Day Laborer Organizing Network, and Sidley Austin. [Read the filing here]

In October of 2018, the Court enjoined the termination of TPS for Sudan, Nicaragua, Haiti, and El Salvador, finding substantial evidence that the terminations were motivated by racism and violated the Administrative Procedure Act. Plaintiffs in Bhattarai v. Nielsen allege that the terminations of TPS for Honduras and Nepal suffer from the same legal flaws and should be set aside. Plaintiffs also allege that the terminations are unconstitutional because they require the U.S. citizen children of TPS holders to choose between their country and their family.

Plaintiff Keshav Raj Bhattarai, a member of Adhikaar and Nepali TPS holder shares, “I am proud to be a part of this lawsuit, for all the other Nepali TPS holders like me. With TPS I have been able to build a new life here with my family and I have a found a stable job. When I see so many people’s lives at risk in losing TPS, I am troubled to see that this country would harm its hardworking workers and people. I wish to continue working to support this country, and also continue supporting the rebuilding of Nepal, which is still recovering from the earthquake.”

The complaint filed today alleges that, in terminating TPS for Honduras and Nepal, political appointees in the Department of Homeland Security deliberately ignored recommendations from U.S. Ambassadors and evidence of conditions on the ground. Instead, they predetermined that TPS must be terminated to further the President’s “America First” policy, which seeks to exclude non-white, non-European immigrants. The complaint recites a litany of racist statements made by President Trump in reference to Latin American and South Asian countries and immigrants, including referring to immigrants as snakes and animals, mispronouncing Nepal as “nipple,” and faking an Indian accent in imitation of Indian Prime Minster Narendra Modi.

Plaintiff Donaldo Posadas Caceres, a member of the Painters’ Union (IUPAT DC21) with TPS from Honduras explains, “I’m taking part in this lawsuit not just for myself and my daughter but for everyone who would be hurt by our TPS being taken away. Forcing our children to choose between the life they have here or a country they don’t know is unfair. Sending all of us to danger and instability is unjust. I’m proud to have been a union painter for two decades in this country and it does not feel right to see all of that just cut away.”

Jessica Bansal, NDLON’s Co-Legal Director, said: “The Trump Administration is illegally trying to gut the humanitarian TPS program, but TPS holders are fighting back. They have already won a temporary reprieve for hundreds of thousands of TPS holders. With today’s filing, they seek to protect tens of thousands more.”

Plaintiffs in the lawsuit are members of diverse organizations fighting to defend TPS in the courts and in Congress, including Adhikaar, the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT), AND the National TPS Alliance.

Jenny Zhao, Staff Attorney at Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus, said: “The Trump Administration’s plan to end TPS for Honduras and Nepal must be stopped before it causes immeasurable harm to TPS holders, their families, and their communities.”

Minju Cho, Staff Attorney at Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Los Angeles said: “TPS holders are valued members of our communities. They are parents to tens and thousands of U.S. citizen children. TPS is vital to people’s ability to work and provide for themselves and their families. We are proud to stand alongside these communities in their fight against the Trump administration’s unconstitutional attempt to take TPS away.”

Ahilan Arulanantham, Senior Counsel at the ACLU of Southern California, said: “We are proud to represent these courageous U.S. citizen children and their parents who held Temporary Protected Status before the Trump Administration unlawfully stripped it away. They ask only that our government respect their due process rights. We hope the Court will uphold the rule of law and grant them the protection they deserve.”

Natural Habitat Adventures Takes Stand Against Alaska’s Proposed Pebble Mine

Southwest Alaska is now ground zero in a conservation crisis. A massive open-pit gold and copper mine is slated for development inside the headwaters of the Bristol Bay watershed, home to two national parks, a national wildlife refuge, a state park and countless acres of sensitive and pristine roadless terrain. As a global leader in conservation tourism, Natural Habitat Adventures is taking a stand against this dramatic insult upon the environment, wildlife and Alaskan communities. Together with Alaska’s fishing industry, Native communities and more than 200,000 World Wildlife Fund supporters, Natural Habitat Adventures encourages opposition to the Pebble Mine’s environmental impacts and the destruction of Alaska’s pristine habitats, inviting signatures to WWF’s petition here.

A Continuing Standoff

A fight against the proposed Pebble Mine has raged for nearly two decades, following the discovery of the rich mineral deposit near Katmai National Park. Prospects looked positive for protecting this sensitive environment in 2014 when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Obama Administration deemed this heavy metal mining project too risky to consider further.

But the EPA under the current administration has reversed course, reopening the permitting process and charging the Army Corps of Engineers with preparing an Environmental Impact Statement that will aid regulators reviewing the permit application. The outlook for Bristol Bay and Katmai National Park, where Natural Habitat Adventures leads trips to view coastal brown bears, has become precarious. As the Trump Administration pushes the Pebble Mine agenda forward, the possibility grows for approval of a massive mining operation that would mar a vast tract of untouched wilderness and two of Bristol Bay’s prime river systems.

A Destructive Impact

The proposed industrial site would be nearly as deep as the Grand Canyon and consume more land than the area of Manhattan. It lies within an active earthquake zone. And it would harm one of the most productive marine ecosystems on the planet—including the world’s largest wild salmon fishery, which produces 46 percent of the world’s wild sockeye salmon harvest alone and provides income for 31 Alaska Native villages and more than 12,000 jobs for fisherman and processors—a $5.4 billion annual industry.

In addition to the footprint of the mine itself, multiple landscape-altering transportation systems would traverse pristine wilderness that provides critical habitat for wildlife, including thousands of bears and millions of wild salmon, and sustains ecosystem health for Alaska Natives who have relied on natural resources in this region for centuries. Other wildlife that depends on this unique environment include bald eagles and 189 other bird species, seals, walrus, pacific right whales, beluga whales, rainbow trout, and more than 40 other species of terrestrial mammals such as moose, wolves and others.

The Pebble project will cause irreparable harm to this vulnerable ecosystem. In addition to tailings and toxic water pollution on site, the injuries include an 80-mile-long road crossing more than 200 streams and penetrating the most productive brown bear habitat on Earth, a year-round icebreaking ferry running across Lake Iliamna, and a large industrial airstrip and port that includes a 4.2-mile dredged corridor through some of ¬¬the world’s most unmarred and productive marine ecosystems. A new road would pass within a mile of the McNeil River State Game Refuge and Sanctuary, currently the undisturbed home of one of Alaska’s densest concentrations of large mammals, including the largest congregation of brown bears anywhere on the planet.

Join the Opposition: Stop Pebble Mine—Make Your Voice Heard by June 29

Time is running out to help protect the brown bears, salmon and other abundant wildlife of Southwest Alaska. The public comment period for the Pebble Project Environmental Impact Statement ends after June 29, 2018, making it critical to voice concern about the Pebble Mine before the end of the month.

Join Natural Habitat Adventures and WWF’s joint opposition to the Pebble Mine by sharing your specific concerns about the project with the Army Corps today. Precise, detailed comments hold the most weight.

VICE News + Donald Trump

As the GOP is recruiting candidates ahead of the 2018 midterms, most of the potential candidates for Senate look more like the 16 other Republicans in last year’s presidential primary than the populist anomaly who took the White House. On ViceNews.com, Alex Thompson examines how the GOP is looking for more conventional Republicans and is not recruiting candidates who share full political views with Trump.

Publicly, the GOP from the national to the local level is loyal and supportive of the president, but their actions suggest that they see Trump’s surprise victory as a one-off rather than a sign of a fundamental shift in the American electorate. Some Republicans are actively fighting Trump’s recent injection of populism, while loyalists see him as the beginning of a new era of politics.

Read “The GOP is not looking for the next Donald Trump” by VICE News’ Alex Thompson here: https://news.vice.com/story/the-republican-party-is-not-looking-for-the-next-donald-trump.

Follow @vicenews and @AlxThomp for more updates.

 

Trump Revealed on Opioid Epidemic 

With more than 100 Americans dying every day from drug overdoses, Trump declared it was time to take action and officially declared the opioid epidemic a national emergency. The announcement was short on details. Declaring a national state of emergency involves more than just a brief statement from the president to the press — there’s a formal process that requires documents to be signed and legal steps to be followed.

On ViceNews.com, Keegan Hamilton details Trump’s informal state of emergency declaration and how a White House spokesman confirmed that the paperwork still remains incomplete.

The informal state of emergency declaration follows a pattern for the Trump administration. Much like his recent tweets about banning transgender people from the military or his early executive orders about cracking down on crime, Trump’s opioid gambit has been — at least so far — all flash and no substance, attracting attention without making any major policy changes.

Read “State of no emergency” by VICE News’ Keegan Hamilton here: https://news.vice.com/story/trump-officially-declared-an-opioid-emergency-and-then-officially-did-nothing. Follow @vicenews and @keegan_hamilton for more updates.