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The Trump Administration Is Ending An Immigration Benefit For Filipino Veterans And Haitians

The programs were ended after Trump signed an executive order in January 2017.

Posted on August 2, 2019, at 1:53 p.m. ET


Drew Angerer / Getty Images

Ken Cuccinelli, acting director of United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.

The Trump administration is ending a policy that allows Filipino veterans of World War II to bring family members to the United States before their green cards are available, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services said Friday.

The administration is also ending a similar program known as the Haitian Family Reunification Parole Program, USCIS said.

The programs were ended as part of President Donald Trump signing an executive order β€” officials claim it's to "better ensure that parole is used only on a case-by-case basis, consistent with the law."

β€œUnder these categorical parole programs, individuals have been able to skip the line and bypass the proper channels established by Congress. With the termination of these programs, these individuals will no longer be permitted to wait in the United States for their family-based green card to become available, consistent with the rules that apply to the rest of the world,” said USCIS Acting Director Ken Cuccinelli said in a statement.

People in the US who currently have these protections won’t have them terminated right away β€” they will have the protections until their term expires.

The Filipino program went into effect in June 2016. It allows veterans and their spouses who are US citizens and lawful permanent residents to request parole for certain family members, allowing them to come to the US "before their immigrant visas become available," according to the program's webpage.

Filipino World War II veterans whose service has been recognized by the US Department of Defense, as well as their spouses, children, or siblings can apply.

The Haitian family program allows "certain eligible U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents to apply for parole for their family members in Haiti. If granted parole, these family members can come to the United States before their immigrant visa priority dates become current. Once in the United States, these individuals may then apply for work authorization while they are waiting to apply for lawful permanent resident status," according to the government.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates and follow BuzzFeed News on Twitter.‏

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