[Federal Register Volume 87, Number 124 (Wednesday, June 29, 2022)]

[Presidential Documents]

[Pages 38871-38873]

From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]

[FR Doc No: 2022-14082]

[[Page 38869]]

Vol. 87

Wednesday,

No. 124

June 29, 2022

Part III

The President

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Memorandum of June 27, 2022--Extending and Expanding Eligibility for

Deferred Enforced Departure for Liberians

Presidential Documents

Federal Register / Vol. 87 , No. 124 / Wednesday, June 29, 2022 /

Presidential Documents

___________________________________________________________________

Title 3--

The President

[[Page 38871]]

Memorandum of June 27, 2022

Extending and Expanding Eligibility for Deferred

Enforced Departure for Liberians

Memorandum for the Secretary of State [and] the

Secretary of Homeland Security

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 the grant of Temporary Protected Status

(TPS). The armed conflict ended in 2003, and TPS for

affected Liberian nationals ended effective October 1,

  1. President Bush then deferred the enforced

departure of those Liberians originally granted TPS.

President Obama, in successive memoranda, extended that

grant of Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) to March 31,

  1. President Trump then determined that conditions

in Liberia did not warrant a further extension of DED,

but that the foreign policy interests of the United

States warranted an orderly transition period for

Liberian DED beneficiaries. President Trump later

extended that DED transition period through March 30,

2020.

In December 2019, the Congress enacted the National

Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 (Public

Law 116-92) (NDAA), which included, as section 7611,

the Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness (LRIF)

provision. The LRIF provision, with limited exceptions,

makes Liberians who have been continuously present in

the United States since November 20, 2014, as well as

their spouses and children, eligible for adjustment of

status to that of lawful permanent resident (LPR). The

NDAA gave eligible Liberian nationals until December

20, 2020, to apply for this adjustment of status. After

the enactment of the LRIF provision, President Trump

further extended the DED transition period through

January 10, 2021, to ensure that DED beneficiaries

would continue to be eligible for employment

authorization during the LRIF application period.

The LRIF application process was new and complex,

resulting in some procedural and administrative

challenges. Recognizing these difficulties, the

Congress enacted a 1-year extension to the application

period in section 901 of the Consolidated

Appropriations Act, 2021 (Public Law 116-260). That

legislation, however, did not provide for continued

employment authorization past January 10, 2021. Through

my memorandum of January 20, 2021 (Reinstating Deferred

Enforced Departure for Liberians), DED was subsequently

reinstated through June 30, 2022, in order to permit

employment authorization for eligible Liberians while

they made their applications for adjustment of status

under the LRIF provision.

There are compelling foreign policy reasons to extend

DED for an additional period for those Liberians

presently residing in the United States who were under

a grant of DED until June 30, 2022, as well as to defer

enforced departure for Liberians who have been

continuously present in the United States since May 20,

  1. In addition to updating the continuous presence

requirement, I have also determined that it is

appropriate to include qualifying Liberians whose LRIF

applications have been denied for reasons other than

ineligibility under sections 7611(b)(1)(C) and (b)(3)

of the NDAA in this DED designation. In particular,

this includes providing protection from removal to

those who arrived in the United States during a time

when conditions prevented them from returning safely,

including through May 20, 2017, and have since

established family and community ties in the

[[Page 38872]]

United States. Providing protection from removal and

work authorization to these Liberians, for whom we have

long authorized TPS or DED in the United States,

including while they complete the LRIF status-

adjustment process, honors the historic close

relationship between the United States and Liberia and

is in the foreign policy interests of the United

States.

Pursuant to my constitutional authority to conduct the

foreign relations of the United States, I have

determined that it is in the foreign policy interests

of the United States to defer through June 30, 2024,

the removal of any Liberian national, or person without

nationality who last habitually resided in Liberia, who

is present in the United States and who was under a

grant of DED as of June 30, 2022, as well as any

Liberian national, or person without nationality who

last habitually resided in Liberia, who has been

continuously physically present in the United States

since May 20, 2017. I have also determined that any

Liberian national, or person without nationality who

last habitually resided in Liberia, who was under a

grant of DED as of June 30, 2022, or who has been

continuously physically present in the United States

since May 20, 2017, should have continued employment

authorization through June 30, 2024.

The Secretary of Homeland Security shall promptly

direct the appropriate officials to make provision, by

means of a notice published in the Federal Register,

for immediate allowance of employment authorization for

those Liberians who held appropriate DED-related

employment authorization documents as of June 30, 2022,

or those Liberian nationals who have been continuously

present in the United States since May 20, 2017. The

Secretary of Homeland Security shall also provide for

the prompt issuance of new or replacement employment

authorization documents in appropriate cases.

This grant of DED and continued employment

authorization shall apply to any Liberian DED

beneficiary as of June 30, 2022, or any Liberian

national who has been continuously present in the

United States since May 20, 2017, but shall not apply

to such persons in the following categories:

(1) individuals who would be ineligible for TPS for

the reasons provided in section 244(c)(2)(B) of the

Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C.

1254a(c)(2)(B);

(2) individuals who sought or seek LPR status under

the LRIF provision but whose applications have been or

are denied by the Secretary of Homeland Security due to

ineligibility for the LRIF provision under sections

7611(b)(1)(C) and (b)(3) of the NDAA;

(3) individuals whose removal the Secretary of

Homeland Security determines is in the interest of the

United States, subject to the LRIF provision;

(4) individuals whose presence or activities in the

United States the Secretary of State has reasonable

grounds to believe would have potentially serious

adverse foreign policy consequences for the United

States;

(5) individuals who have voluntarily returned to

Liberia or their country of last habitual residence

outside the United States for an aggregate period of

180 days or more, as specified in subsection (c)(2) of

the LRIF provision; or

(6) individuals who are subject to extradition.

Accordingly, I hereby direct the Secretary of Homeland

Security to take the necessary steps to implement for

eligible Liberians:

(1) a deferral of enforced departure from the

United States through June 30, 2024, effective

immediately; and

(2) authorization for employment valid through June

30, 2024.

[[Page 38873]]

The Secretary of Homeland Security is authorized and

directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal

Register.

(Presidential Sig.)

THE WHITE HOUSE,

Washington, June 27, 2022

[FR Doc. 2022-14082

Filed 6-28-22; 11:15 am]

Billing code 4410-10-P