On March 15, President Obama extended the Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) status of thousands of Liberian residents of the United States for 18 months. through October Many Liberians have lived in the United States since 1991 under a series of special grants of temporary status.
According to the White House memorandum:
“Since 1991, the United States has provided safe haven for Liberians who were forced to flee their country as a result of armed conflict and widespread civil strife, in part through granting Temporary Protected Status (TPS). The armed conflict ended in 2003 and conditions improved such that TPS ended effective October 1, 2007. President Bush then deferred the enforced departure of the Liberians originally granted TPS. I extended that grant of Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) to March 31, 2013. I have determined that there are compelling foreign policy reasons to again extend DED to those Liberians presently residing in the United States under the existing grant of DED.”
With other groups, the Advocates for Human Rights are advocating for legislation that would allow Liberians in the United States to apply for permanent status.
For background, see Liberia Is Not Ready 2010: A Report of Country Conditions in Liberia and Reasons Why the United States Should Extend Deferred Enforced Departure (February 2010), an Advocates for Human Rights report, and Liberians want to stay in Minnesota.
Reporting for this article supported in part by Bush Foundation.