Trump administration isn't granting temporary protection for Bahamians

By , Kathryn Watson

/ CBS News

Bahamas beginning Hurricane Dorian recovery

The Trump administration will not be granting temporary protected status to people of the Bahamas fleeing the decimation of their islands by Hurricane Dorian, a senior administration official confirmed to CBS News.

It's something the Trump administration had said was a possibility, as the president's White House seeks to restrict the flow of immigrants into the country.

"The Bahamians impacted by Hurricane Dorian are facing a humanitarian crisis, and the American government, international partners and private organizations continue to support them with aid and services," a White House official told CBS News. "At this time we do not plan to invoke Temporary Protected Status for those currently in the United States."

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In the past, the U.S. has granted TPS for some fleeing nations hit by large-scale natural disasters. The Trump administration has tried to end some of those status grants, moving the battle over them to the courts. TPS, established by Congress in 1990, is intended to protect foreign nationals in the U.S. from being returned to their home countries.

The United Nations estimates the massive hurricane, which was nearly at a standstill over the islands, left more than 70,000 homeless. The official death toll continues to skyrocket.

Earlier this week, the president insisted that Bahamians will be able to get into the U.S. but need to have "totally proper documentation."

"I don't want to allow people that weren't supposed to be in the Bahamas to come into the United States including some very bad people," the president told reporters on the White House South Lawn Tuesday.

First published on September 11, 2019 / 5:36 PM

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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