Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas designated Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Cameroon, for 18 months, effective June 7, 2022, through Dec. 7, 2023. Cameroon nationals and individuals having no nationality who last habitually resided in Cameroon may submit an initial registration application under the designation of Cameroon for TPS and apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) during the 18-month registration period that begins June 7, 2022, and ends on Dec. 7, 2023. Only individuals who are already residing in the United States as of April 14, 2022, will be eligible for TPS.
TPS‑based EADs have a category code of A12 or C19. Once USCIS issues a TPS-based EAD, the individual is authorized to work. All employees including those with a TPS‑related EAD under the TPS designation of Cameroon must show a document proving they are authorized to work to complete Form I‑9.
A country may be designated for TPS when conditions in the country fall into one or more of the three statutory bases for designation: ongoing armed conflict, environmental disaster, or extraordinary and temporary conditions. This designation is based on both ongoing armed conflict and extraordinary and temporary conditions in Cameroon that prevent Cameroonian nationals, and those of no nationality who last habitually resided in Cameroon, from returning to Cameroon safely.
The conditions result from the extreme violence between government forces and armed separatists and a significant rise in attacks from Boko Haram, the combination of which has triggered a humanitarian crisis. Extreme violence and the widespread destruction of civilian infrastructure have led to economic instability, food insecurity, and several hundred thousand displaced Cameroonians without access to schools, hospitals, and other critical services.
What is TPS
The Secretary of Homeland Security may designate a foreign country for TPS due to conditions in the country that temporarily prevent the country’s nationals from returning safely, or in certain circumstances, where the country is unable to handle the return of its nationals adequately. USCIS may grant TPS to eligible nationals of certain countries (or parts of countries), who are already in the United States. Eligible individuals without nationality who last resided in the designated country may also be granted TPS.
The Secretary may designate a country for TPS due to the following temporary conditions in the country:
- Ongoing armed conflict (such as civil war)
- An environmental disaster (such as earthquake or hurricane), or an epidemic
- Other extraordinary and temporary conditions
During a designated period, individuals who are TPS beneficiaries or who are found preliminarily eligible for TPS upon initial review of their cases (prima facie eligible):
- Are not removable from the United States
- Can obtain an employment authorization document (EAD)
- May be granted travel authorization
Once granted TPS, an individual also cannot be detained by DHS on the basis of his or her immigration status in the United States.
TPS is a temporary benefit that does not lead to lawful permanent resident status or give any other immigration status. However, registration for TPS does not prevent you from:
- Applying for nonimmigrant status
- Filing for adjustment of status based on an immigrant petition
- Applying for any other immigration benefit or protection for which you may be eligible