Los Angeles has joined the roster of major cities calling on the US government to grant Filipino immigrants protection from deportation in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan. The LA City Council voted Tuesday night for a resolution that urges the Department of Homeland Security to designate the Philippines for Temporary Protected Status, which allows immigrants to live and work in the US for a finite period of time.
An estimated 280,000 Filipinos in the U.S. who don't have legal status stand to benefit from TPS. Councilmember Mitch O'Farrell authored the resolution, at the encouragement of the Pilipino Workers Center which is based in his district.
Aquilina Soriano Versoza, executive director of the Pilipino Workers Center, said it would be "devastating" to deport these Filipino nationals since many are working and sending remittances home. "Not only does it add one more person to the millions that need to be resettled but it also is going to end a string of income that is supporting families there," Soriano Versoza said.