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Community Mobilization Leads to Passage of Temporary Protected Status for Ecuador Resolution in St. Paul 

SAINT PAUL – Yesterday marked another significant victory as the St. Paul City Council voted unanimously in favor of a resolution supporting Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Ecuador, following the passage of a similar resolution in Columbia Heights. The legislation would allow Ecuadorians already in the U.S. to stay and legally work for as long as the TPS designation is active. The TPS Collective, comprised of COPAL Members, has been a driving force, actively mobilizing support for Ecuadorian immigrants and spearheading efforts to prompt city councils across Minnesota to consider resolutions advocating for TPS for Ecuador.  

Ecuadorians are being displaced from their home country at an alarming rate due to natural disasters, an economic downturn, severe political unrest, and civil armed conflict. In Minnesota, the number of asylum cases in immigration court originating from Ecuador jumped by 900% in the last five years. Minnesota now has the 10th highest Ecuadorian population in the United States. 

Extending TPS safeguards to Ecuadorians will ensure the safety of hundreds of thousands of individuals and families. It will contribute to the overall stability and economic growth of our country, bolster supportive communities, and mitigate the impact of forced migration. Supporters of TPS spoke about the work being done in support of Ecuadorian immigrants, highlighting the significance of community support for the Ecuadorian population. 

“Our members, including Ecuadorian member-leaders, have been meeting weekly to build a campaign in support of Temporary Protected Status for Ecuadorians. Claudia Lainez, our workers’ Center Director, has taken incredible leadership to platform members in state and national meetings to advance TPS. The decision to designate TPS status is made by the Executive Branch, so this is all about education and public pressure,” shared Ryan Pérez, Organizing Director at COPAL. “The Ecuadorian community right now needs our collective backing as a small piece of larger immigration reform.”

COPAL’s Organizing Director Ryan Pérez gives testimony at the St. Paul City Council meeting Wednesday afternoon.

To ensure temporary immigration protections for Ecuadorians in Minnesota, Minnesota cities must call for action from the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. The department may designate a country for TPS when conditions prevent that country’s nationals from returning safely. Minneapolis is slated to vote on a resolution in support of TPS for Ecuador on May 23. 

COPAL Education Fund is a statewide, 501(c)(3)nonprofit organization that works to build collective power, transform systems, and create opportunities for Latines to have dignified lives in Minnesota. For more information, please visit

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