Sep 14, 2019

Trump's immigration restrictions hit D.C. construction projects

A worker looks through materials on a construction site on August 15, in Washington, D.C. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP

A massive labor shortage is expected in the construction industry if the Trump administration wins its legal battle to end Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for immigrants from El Salvador, Sudan, Honduras, Nepal, Haiti and Nicaragua, the New York Times reports.

The impact: Roughly 20% of D.C.'s construction workers are in the U.S. due to maintaining their TPS, while almost 46,000 people with TPS are in the Virginia, Maryland and D.C. area overall, per the Center for American Progress.

  • Nationwide, 60% of people with TPS are from El Salvador, according to the Congressional Research Service.
  • Other industries that depend on immigrants include meatpacking, chicken processing, food service and garment manufacturing, per the Times.

The bottom line: If The Trump administration's campaign to end TPS status wins, D.C. would feel its economic effects more than most other cities in the country, the NYT reports, adding that legal experts expect the issue to reach the Supreme Court

Go deeper: Trump officials encouraged TPS terminations, emails show

Editor's note: This story has been updated to state that a labor shortage is expected in the construction industry.

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Trump administration reaches asylum deal with El Salvador

Migrants being led out of the National Institute of Migration in downtown Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. Photo: Paul Ratje/AFP/Getty Images

The Trump administration signed an asylum agreement with El Salvador on Friday, which could force Central American migrants who pass through the country to first seek asylum there or be sent back to the country once they reach the U.S..

Why it matters: The new agreement is the latest attempt to curtail Central Americans seeking asylum in the U.S.

Go deeperArrowSep 20, 2019

Trump lowering the number of refugees permitted into U.S. to 18,000

Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

The Trump administration is proposing to cut the number of refugees permitted to resettle in the U.S. next year to just 18,000 — down from a record-low of 30,000 last year, according to a State Department press release on Thursday.

Why it matters: The administration also plans to prioritize refugees who have been persecuted for religious beliefs, Iraqis who have helped the U.S. overseas, and legitimate refugees from Northern Triangle countries, per the release. This would be the fourth time the Trump administration lowered the refugee cap, and it had reportedly discussed lowering it to zero. There are more displaced people in the world today than at any point since World War II, according to the United Nations.

Go deeperArrowSep 26, 2019

Judge blocks Trump admin plan to penalize immigrants likely to use public benefits

People recieve free assistance with U.S. citizenship applications in Boston on Sept. 28, 2019. Photo: Jonathan Wiggs/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

A federal judge on Friday blocked the Trump administration's proposed rule to deny residency to immigrants who use or are likely to use public benefit programs such as food stamps, housing assistance or Medicaid, the New York Times reports.

Driving the news: In a separate proposal last week, the Trump administration proposed requiring immigrant-visa applicants to prove they can obtain health insurance within 30 days of entering the U.S. or cover their own health care expenses.

Go deeperArrowOct 11, 2019