U.S House Passes Bill to Grant Green Cards to Liberians and other Immigrants on DED/TPS – Senate Yet to Decide

(Seated L-R) Board Members – Welma Mashinini Redd, Annie Wright, LCA President Lucy Wilson Kear, Wala Blegay

Washington DC – The United States House of Representatives has voted decisively to pass HR-6 seeking to grant Permanent Residency (Green Card) status to Liberians on Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) along with other nationals on Temporary Protected Status (TPS) including those on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

The sweeping immigration bill, dubbed the DREAM and Promise Act of 2019, was passed by a majority vote of 237 to 187 by all 230 Democrats along with seven Republicans. The bill is headed to the Republican-controlled Senate, where it is certain to face an uphill battle with a veto threat from the White House.

Prior to the vote, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer hosted a high level delegation of the Liberian Community Association of the Washington DC Metro area (LCA) and assured them of his commitment to passage of the legislation. The delegation led by LCA President Lucy Wilson-Kear was present in the House Gallery for the historic vote.

The Passage of the bill came in the immediate aftermath of a major event held over the weekend honoring the services of the House Majority Leader, Maryland Congressman Jamie Raskin, and Brooklyn Park Councilman Wynfred Russell for their relentless effort to achieve immigration protection through DED extension and ongoing legislation in Congress. Other honorees included the former Charge d’Affairs of the Liberian Embassy in Washington Sophie Mawlue, Gustavo Torres of CASA, Amaha Kasa. Leader of African Communities Together, among others.

HR-6 is one of two legislations in Congress seeking to grant permanent Residency to Liberians on DED.  Another long-standing measure titled the “Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act” was also introduced in Congress for another term by U.S. Senator Jack Reed (D-RI)andCongressman David Cicilline (D-RI.