Advocates are calling for humanitarian relief for individuals from DRC who are living in the United States.
Armed conflict and violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has resulted in a humanitarian crisis causing death, displacement, and growing starvation in the country. The conflict has spanned over a period of 25 years and caused the death of over 5 million people and the internal displacement of thousands. As of December 2021, 5.4 million civilians were internally displaced due to conflict. The resurgence of armed conflict between government forces and non-state armed rebel group “Mouvement du 23 mars” or M23 has led to the displacement of over 186,000 people since the end of October 2022. Violence is persistent due to atrocities committed by state-sponsored and non-state actors, and communal atrocities that show no sign of ending. It is some of the worst violence in the region since rebels were chased to neighboring Rwanda in 2013. The insecurity created by armed groups has led to food scarcity and acute malnutrition, affecting an estimated 10 million people, predominantly children. Of the top five countries of origin of refugees that the United States has resettled this year, DRC had the highest number of resettled refugees. Yet, DRC is the only one without Temporary Protected Status.
What is TPS?
Temporary Protected Status is a humanitarian relief granted by the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). It was established by Congress recognizing the dangers of returning immigrants to their home countries experiencing ongoing armed conflict, natural disasters, or other extraordinary or temporary conditions that are a threat to their safety. If the country's conditions reflect one of the above statutory grounds of eligibility, the Secretary provides a designation of Temporary Protected Status (TPS). DHS makes the final decision on whether to designate TPS for a country, hence requiring a great deal of push from advocates. Learn more about TPS here.
What is SSR?
Special Student Relief (SSR) provides relief to F1 international students who are experiencing severe economic hardship as a direct result of the humanitarian crisis in their home country. SSR gives international students more flexibility related to their duration of status, course load, and employment eligibility