Lebanon Travel Warning

There is potential for death or injury in Lebanon because of terrorist bombings.  Violent extremist groups operate in Lebanon, including Hizballah, ISIL (Da’esh), ANF, Hamas, and the Abdullah Azzam Brigades (AAB). The U.S. government has designated all of these groups as terrorist organizations. ISIL and ANF have claimed responsibility for suicide bombings in Lebanon, and these groups are active throughout Lebanon. U.S. citizens have been the targets of terrorist attacks in Lebanon in the past, and the threat of anti-Western terrorist activity remains, as does the risk of death or injury as a non-targeted bystander.

Sudden outbreaks of violence can occur at any time in Lebanon, and armed clashes have occurred along the Lebanese borders and in Beirut. On June 27, 2016, a series of blasts caused by suicide bombers in Qa’a, a town along Lebanon’s northeastern border killed five people and injured many others.  On the evening of June 12, 2016, an explosion occurred outside a commercial bank in the central Beirut area of Verdun, causing major damage to the building and injuring two people. On November 12, 2015, twin suicide bombings in a commercial and residential area of the Burj al-Barajneh neighborhood in Beirut’s southern suburbs killed 43 people and wounded 239 others.  ISIL claimed responsibility for the bombings. The Lebanese Armed Forces are routinely brought in to quell the violence in these situations.

The Lebanese government cannot guarantee the protection of U.S. citizens in the country against sudden outbreaks of violence. Protesters have blocked major roads to gain publicity for their causes, including the primary road between downtown Beirut and Rafiq Hariri International Airport. Access to the airport may be cut off if the security situation deteriorates.  Family, neighborhood, or sectarian disputes can escalate quickly and can lead to gunfire or other violence with no warning. In Tripoli, the neighborhoods of Bab al-Tabbaneh and Jabal Mohsen remain tense. Armed clashes have resulted in deaths and injuries in these neighborhoods in the past, and there are potentially large numbers of weapons in the hands of non-governmental elements.  Celebratory gunfire in Lebanon has resulted in accidental injuries and deaths. The ability of U.S. government personnel to reach travelers or provide emergency services can be severely limited. 

Kidnapping, whether for ransom, political motives, or family disputes, is a problem in Lebanon. A U.S. citizen was kidnapped in a family dispute in January 2016. Suspects in kidnappings sometimes have ties to terrorist or criminal organizations. The U.S. government’s ability to help U.S. citizens kidnapped or taken hostage is very limited.  Although the U.S. government places the highest priority on the safe recovery of kidnapped U.S. citizens, it is U.S. policy not to make concessions to hostage takers.  U.S. law also makes it illegal to provide material support to terrorist organizations.

Clashes between Lebanese authorities and criminal elements continue to occur in areas of the Bekaa Valley and border regions. The U.S. Embassy strongly urges U.S. citizens to avoid the Lebanese-Syrian border region.  There have been episodic clashes between the Lebanese Army and Syrian-based extremists along the border with Syria since August 2014. On March 24, 2016, a roadside bomb targeting a Lebanese Armed Forces patrol killed a Lebanese soldier and wounded several others in Lebanon’s restive northeast border town of Arsal.  On November 5, 2015, a deadly blast ripped through Arsal, killing at least four people and wounding several others. The November attack, caused by a suicide bomber using a motorbike, targeted a meeting in the al-Sabil neighborhood of the Committee of Qalamoun Scholars. The next day, a Lebanese Armed Forces patrol in al-Sabil was targeted by a roadside explosive device.

U.S. citizens in Lebanon should monitor political and security developments in both Lebanon and Syria. There have been incidents of cross-border shelling and air strikes of Lebanese villages from Syria, resulting in deaths and injuries.  There have been reports of armed groups from Syria kidnapping or attacking Lebanese citizens living in border areas.

There are border tensions to the south with Israel, and the U.S. Embassy urges U.S. citizens to avoid this border. In January 2015, hostilities between Israel and Hizballah flared in the Golan Heights and Shebaa Farms area, and the potential for wider conflict remains. South of the Litani River, Hizballah has stockpiled large amounts of munitions in anticipation of a future conflict with Israel.  In the past, there have been sporadic rocket attacks from southern Lebanon into Israel in connection with the violence between Israel and Hamas in Gaza. These attacks, normally consisting of rockets fired at northern Israel, often provoke a prompt Israeli military response. The rocket attacks and responses can occur without warning. Landmines and unexploded ordnance pose significant dangers throughout southern Lebanon, particularly south of the Litani River, as well as in areas of the country where fighting was intense during the civil war. More than 40 civilians have been killed and more than 300 injured by unexploded ordnance since the 2006 Israel-Hizballah war. Travelers should watch for posted landmine warnings and strictly avoid all areas where landmines and unexploded ordnance may be present.

Hizballah maintains a strong presence in parts of south Beirut, the Bekaa Valley, and areas in southern Lebanon. Hizballah has been the target of attacks by other extremist groups for their support of the Asad regime in Syria. 

Palestinian groups hostile to both the Lebanese government and the United States operate autonomously in formal and informal refugee camps in different areas of the country. Intra-communal violence within the camps has resulted in shootings and explosions. On April 12, 2016, a car bomb explosion killed a senior Palestinian official near the Ein al-Hilweh Palestinian refugee camp in the southern port city of Sidon. U.S. citizens should avoid travel to refugee camps.

The U.S. Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the risk of traveling on airlines that fly over Syria. Commercial aircraft are at risk when flying over regions in conflict. We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens considering air travel overseas evaluate the route that their proposed commercial flight may take and avoid any flights that pass through Syrian airspace. U.S. government personnel in Lebanon have been prohibited from taking flights that pass through Syrian airspace. 

The Department of State considers the threat to U.S. government personnel in Beirut sufficiently serious to require them to live and work under strict security restrictions. The internal security policies of the U.S. Embassy may be adjusted at any time and without advance notice. These practices limit, and may prevent, access by U.S. Embassy officials to certain areas of the country, especially to parts of metropolitan Beirut, Tripoli, the Bekaa Valley, refugee camps, and southern Lebanon. 

In the event that the security climate in Lebanon worsens, U.S. citizens will be responsible for arranging their own travel out of Lebanon. The Embassy does not offer protection services to U.S. citizens who feel unsafe.  U.S. citizens with special medical or other needs should be aware of the risks of remaining given their condition, and should be prepared to seek treatment in Lebanon if they cannot arrange for travel out of the country.

U.S. government-facilitated evacuations, such as the evacuation that took place from Lebanon in 2006, occur only when no safe commercial alternatives exist, and they are not guaranteed even when commercial travel options are limited or non-existent.  Evacuation assistance is provided on a cost-recovery basis, which means the traveler must reimburse the U.S. government for travel costs.   U.S. citizens in Lebanon should ensure that they have valid U.S. passports, as lack of documentation could hinder U.S. citizens’ ability to depart the country.  U.S. Legal Permanent Residents should consult with the Department of Homeland Security before they depart the United States to ensure they have proper documentation to re-enter.  Further information on the Department’s role during emergencies is provided on the Bureau of Consular Affairs’ website

For more information:

Green Bay manufacturer faces more than $219K in proposed penalties after two workers suffer severe injuries within 10 days


U.S. Department of Labor

January 18, 2017

Green Bay manufacturer faces more than $219K in proposed penalties
after two workers suffer severe injuries within 10 days
Machinery was returned to service before providing effective safety guards

GREEN BAY, Wis. – In less than 10 days in 2016, two employees at a Green Bay muffler component manufacturer suffered severe injuries as they operated machinery without adequate safety guards and procedures in place, federal workplace safety investigators have determined.

On Jan. 18, 2017, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued one willful, one repeated, one other-than-serious violation and two serious violations to Bay Fabrication. The company, part of the Bay Family of Companies with 75 locations in the U.S., faces $219,242 in proposed penalties.

Investigators determined a worker had his left hand crushed on July 21, 2016, by a molding machine, when the tamp head smashed his hand as he removed a mold from the machine. OSHA found the machine’s safety interlock on the door guarding the operating parts was damaged and not functional properly which disabled the safety guard and led to the injury.

On July 30, 2016, another worker suffered the partial amputation of his left middle finger. In this instance, investigators found the molding machine cycled and caught his finger in an unguarded pinch point. They determined the machine was not locked out as required.

„The fact that two workers suffered debilitating injuries is tragic. The reality is that the company failed to re-evaluate its machine safety procedures and continued to expose other workers to the same hazards even after these injuries,” said Robert Bonack, OSHA’s area director in Appleton. „Adequate and properly installed machine safety guards and lockout/tag out procedures must be in place to prevent workers from coming in contact with operating parts.”

OSHA also found the company:

  • Failed to guard operating parts on various machines in the facility.
  • Improperly installed safety guards on machines that created a hazard for employees.
  • Failed to record work related injury on the illness and injury logs.

View current citations here.

Based in Green Bay, the Bay Family of Companies operates 40 corporations that produce a variety of insulation products used in the industrial and automotive industries. The employer has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director, or contest the findings before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

To ask questions, obtain compliance assistance, file a complaint, or report amputations, eye loss, workplace hospitalizations, fatalities or situations posing imminent danger to workers, the public should call OSHA’s toll-free hotline at 800-321-OSHA (6742) or the agency’s Appleton Area Office at 920-734-4521.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit http://www.osha.gov.

# # #

Media Contacts:

Scott Allen, 312-353-4727, allen.scott@dol.gov
Rhonda Burke, 312-353-6976, burke.rhonda@dol.gov

Release Number: 17-75-CHI


U.S. Department of Labor news materials are accessible at http://www.dol.gov. The department’s Reasonable Accommodation Resource Center converts departmental information and documents into alternative formats, which include Braille and large print. For alternative format requests, please contact the department at (202) 693-7828 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (federal relay).


NISO Recommended Practice PIE-J: Presentation & Identification of E-Journals

Recommendations Ensure Long-Term Online Accessibility to Scholarly Journals Even After Title and Publisher Changes

On March 27, 2013, NISO announced the publication of a new Recommended Practice: PIE-J: Presentation & Identification of E-Journals (NISO RP-16-2013). This Recommended Practice provides guidance to publishers and platform providers on the presentation of e-journals—particularly regarding the title, ISSN, and citation—and solves some long-standing concerns of serials, collections, and electronic resources librarians. The document also includes examples of good publication practices using screenshots from various publishers’ online journal platforms; a discussion of helpful resources for obtaining title history and ISSN information; an overview of the International Standard Serial Number (ISSN) and key points for using it correctly; an explanation of the Digital Object Identifier (DOI®), the registration agency CrossRef, and tips on using DOIs for journal title management; and a review of related standards and recommended practices.

Later in 2013, the PIE-J Standing Committee was formed. The charge for the Standing Committee is to:

continuously promote the PIE-J Recommended Practice, nationally and globally [in large part by encouraging librarians to contact publishers and e-journal providers to bring the guidelines to their attention but also through other formal and informal means];

respond to specific inquiries about PIE-J; and

gather comments and information to assist with the 24-month review.

On October 21, 2015 the Committee issued its report from the 24-month review in which it re-affirmed PIE-J as a NISO Recommended Practice with no major changes.

The National Library of Medicine, the world’s largest medical library and a component of the National Institutes of Health, has been a partner in the development of the PIE-J Recommended Practice because of its deep interest in the publishing models used by scientific journals, from the viewpoints of practical and efficient use of titles that are indexed for MEDLINE, and the clear and accurate preservation of the scientific literature for use by future generations.  

Please refer to the NISO PIE-J Web site for further information, including the Standing Committee roster, the full text of the PIE-J Recommended Practice, a PIE-J summary brochure, a template for a publisher/provider letter to report e-journal access or display comments, and how to join the PIE-J Interest Group.

Genetics Home Reference: CLN7 disease

  • Craiu D, Dragostin O, Dica A, Hoffman-Zacharska D, Gos M, Bastian AE, Gherghiceanu M, Rolfs A, Nahavandi N, Craiu M, Iliescu C. Rett-like onset in late-infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis (CLN7) caused by compound heterozygous mutation in the MFSD8 gene and review of the literature data on clinical onset signs. Eur J Paediatr Neurol. 2015 Jan;19(1):78-86. doi: 10.1016/j.ejpn.2014.07.008.

  • Kollmann K, Uusi-Rauva K, Scifo E, Tyynelä J, Jalanko A, Braulke T. Cell biology and function of neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis-related proteins. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2013 Nov;1832(11):1866-81. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2013.01.019. Epub 2013 Feb 9. Review.

  • Kousi M, Siintola E, Dvorakova L, Vlaskova H, Turnbull J, Topcu M, Yuksel D, Gokben S, Minassian BA, Elleder M, Mole SE, Lehesjoki AE. Mutations in CLN7/MFSD8 are a common cause of variant late-infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis. Brain. 2009 Mar;132(Pt 3):810-9. doi: 10.1093/brain/awn366. Epub 2009 Feb 5.

  • Sharifi A, Kousi M, Sagné C, Bellenchi GC, Morel L, Darmon M, Hulková H, Ruivo R, Debacker C, El Mestikawy S, Elleder M, Lehesjoki AE, Jalanko A, Gasnier B, Kyttälä A. Expression and lysosomal targeting of CLN7, a major facilitator superfamily transporter associated with variant late-infantile neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis. Hum Mol Genet. 2010 Nov 15;19(22):4497-514. doi: 10.1093/hmg/ddq381. Epub 2010 Sep 7.

  • Siintola E, Topcu M, Aula N, Lohi H, Minassian BA, Paterson AD, Liu XQ, Wilson C, Lahtinen U, Anttonen AK, Lehesjoki AE. The novel neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis gene MFSD8 encodes a putative lysosomal transporter. Am J Hum Genet. 2007 Jul;81(1):136-46.

  • Williams RE, Mole SE. New nomenclature and classification scheme for the neuronal ceroid lipofuscinoses. Neurology. 2012 Jul 10;79(2):183-91. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0b013e31825f0547.

  • NLM Strategic Planning

    The National Library of Medicine is developing a new strategic plan in 2017.

    A decade has passed since NLM issued the long-range plan under which it is currently operating, Charting the Course for the 21st Century: NLM’s Long Range Plan 2006-2016. Significant advances in biomedical informatics, data science, precision medicine, open access to biomedical information, and changes in our country’s health systems, offer new directions and opportunities for scientific achievement. As the world’s largest biomedical library, the home of significant biomedical data resources and major infrastructure, and the designated NIH lead for data science and open science, the NLM aims to seize the opportunities afforded by these changes to more effectively convey health information and accelerate discovery and progress in biomedical research. NLM is committed to building a data infrastructure that will support the future of biomedical research.

    Background

    As defined in the 1956 establishing legislation, the purpose of the NLM is to „assist the advancement of medical and related sciences and to aid the dissemination and exchange of scientific and other information important to the progress of medicine and to the public health,” and its basic functions are to acquire, preserve, and make available materials pertinent to medicine (very broadly defined in the Act); to prepare and make available indexes, catalogs, and bibliographies of the materials; and to provide reference and research assistance.

    As we undertake the planning process, our commitment to the core mission remains strong. NLM presents a highly visible face of NIH across the United States and around the globe. Through its information systems, biomedical informatics and data science research portfolio, extensive training programs, and many partnerships, NLM plays an essential role in furthering fundamental research; catalyzing and supporting the translation of basic science into new treatments, products, and improved practice; and providing useful decision support for health professionals, the public health and emergency response workforce, and patients.

    Our process will build on the report of the Advisory Committee to the Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) regarding the future of NLM (https://acd.od.nih.gov/nlm.htm) that followed the retirement of its long-time director, Dr. Donald Lindberg. With the appointment of its new Director, Dr. Patricia Flatley Brennan, and the launch of major data science and data intensive NIH initiatives, a strategic plan for NLM is both timely and propitious.

    Planning Themes

    Four themes have been identified as a framework for considering priorities and future directions during the strategic planning process. Panels of outside experts will be convened around each of the four planning themes. In addition to the overaching themes, a number of cross-cutting topical threads will be considered in the context of the major themes. These include standards, partnerships, user communities, user engagement and education outreach, international engagement, health disparities, computing infrastructure, physical plant infrastructure, research needs and funding, and workforce developmentThe topics are listed below with a brief description.

    1)  Role of NLM in advancing data science, open science, and biomedical informatics

    NLM serves as the organizational leader and a major sponsor of research, development, training and workforce development in data science, information science, biomedical informatics, and health sciences librarianship, all of which facilitate open science. Understanding trends in data management, curation, knowledge representation, analysis technologies, communications infrastructure, and the semantics and importance of new classes of health-relevant data will be essential to the institution’s success in these areas in the future.

    2)  Role of NLM in advancing biomedical discovery and translational science

    NLM is a global resource that supports and catalyzes health-related scientific discovery and effective translation of new knowledge into practice.  Integrated retrieval and analysis tools provide linkages that promote discovery across a wide variety of databases containing biomedical literature, genomic information, and other scientific and clinical data. Novel translational resources such as ClinicalTrials.gov accelerate accrual to clinical research studies and promote scientific integrity via publication of study designs and research results.  Researcher access to new classes of data, such as electronic health records, is supporting nontraditional discovery science.  Both curiosity-driven and translational science are expected to continue to evolve rapidly over the coming decade.

    3)  Role of the NLM in supporting the public’s health: clinical systems, public health systems and services, and personal health

    NLM’s mission includes providing information to promote health and reduce the burden of suffering from disease worldwide.  Healthcare organizations are undergoing dramatic changes in response to the need to demonstrate value, safety, and effectiveness. With its initiatives to distribute and promote adoption of health data standards, NLM has been influential in enabling interoperability of clinical systems and meaningful use of electronic health records. Factors such as behavioral and lifestyle characteristics, environmental exposures, and biomarkers of immune status are becoming more important.  New technologies and awareness are enabling individuals to reach goals for health promotion and disease prevention.  Novel validated models for decision support are demanded by the expanded complexity of knowledge in all disciplines of human health and disease.

    4)  Role of NLM in building collections to support discovery and health in the 21st century

    NLM has the world’s largest collection of published biomedical literature, with many items that are literally unavailable anywhere else.  The NLM collections already extend far beyond traditional publications, whether in physical or digital format, to include unpublished manuscripts, images, video, sound recordings, web pages, and, especially, databases containing a wide variety and enormous quantities of digital data. The nature of scholarly publication and scientific discovery continue to evolve rapidly, with implications for what data and information NLM should collect and the methods to be used to acquire, archive, and disseminate new data, information and knowledge relevant to human health and disease.

    Additional Topical Threads

    In addition to the four main themes, a number of cross-cutting threads will be considered in the context of more than one theme.

    Standards

    NLM has long served as an advocate for and developer of data standards that promote interoperability of information systems and comparability of research and clinical findings.  Each planning domain will consider specific roles that NLM might usefully serve in the development and adoption of technical standards in their area of emphasis.

    Partnerships

    NLM benefits from and contributes to a variety of organizational relationships in developing,  maintaining, and promoting access to and use of information resources including publishers; federal, state and local government health agencies; professional societies; other libraries; educational institutions; community based organizations; and a variety of other public and private entities.  Each planning domain will include consideration of the partnerships that can contribute to NLM’s success in its specific area.

    User Communities

    NLM has always confronted geography and socioeconomic diversity, including levels of education from grade school through multiple advanced degrees.  The digital age has introduced new dimensions of lifestyle diversity that have implications for current and future NLM resources that will need to accommodate a persistent ‘digital divide’, meet the needs of advanced data scientists and of the historically underserved, as well as the evolving lifestyles and information technologies used by millennials, Gen-X/Y, Baby Boomers, the elderly who are ‘aging in place’, and others.  Each planning domain will include consideration of the diversity of needs of users in its specific area.

    User Engagement and Educational Outreach

    Creation of high quality information resources is necessary but not sufficient to ensure that they are adopted by their intended users and thereby help realize the intended beneficial effects.  The need for specific types of user engagement, outreach and training related to current and future NLM resources will be addressed by each of the planning groups.

    International Engagement

    NLM is not just a national library. It has become an essential wellspring of scientific and health-related information for all nations. Each planning group will consider the international aspects of its topic area, and any special opportunities the NLM has to engage in international partnerships to advance the creation of resources and effective dissemination of scientific and health knowledge to the global community.

    Health Disparities

    Persistent, and in some cases increasing, disparities in the burden of disease and suboptimal health outcomes have been an ongoing public health challenge. Differences in lifespan and quality of life for affluent, well-educated Americans versus groups who lack those advantages, as well as considerations regarding those with diminished health literacy, are an important element of the planning charge to each group. Planning groups will consider any factors within their domains that have applicability for enabling research or promoting initiatives that have potential for addressing health disparities.

    Infrastructure: computing

    Provisioning the ever-growing Digital Library with sufficient computing resources will be a component of the infrastructure planning and recommendations of each topic area.

    Infrastructure: physical plant

    Improvement and expansion of NLM’s aging and space-limited facilities will need to be considered in the context of each of its mission areas and their programmatic requirements.

    Research Needs and Funding

    NLM has both extramural and intramural research programs, and consideration of the scope of these will be a topic of planning panel discussions.  NLM’s research funding portfolio is relatively small compared to most NIH institutes, and mechanisms to enhance and sustain research funding will be a component of the planning process.

    Workforce Development

    In addition to serving as the primary source of academic research training in biomedical informatics, NLM provides a variety of education and training opportunities for its own staff, for biomedical librarians through the National Network of Libraries of Medicine and in cooperation with professional associations, for health professions students, and for practicing clinicians and researchers.  The needs of all of these groups will be considered in the formulation of recommendations related to workforce development.

    Community Input

    Request for Information

    We are seeking input from our broad stakeholder community through a Request for Information [https://archives.nih.gov/asites/grants/11-14-2016/grants/guide/notice-files/NOT-LM-17-002.html] that runs through January 23, 2017.

    We recognize that many of our stakeholders generously replied to the 2015 RFI regarding future directions of NLM. Input provided in 2015 is already under consideration and need not be re-submitted. The 2015 RFI was issued by NIH on behalf of the NLM Working Group of the Advisory Committee to the NIH Director (ACD) to obtain input for their June 2015 report (http://acd.od.nih.gov/reports/Report-NLM-06112015-ACD.pdf) on a vision for the future of NLM in the context of NLM’s leadership transition and emerging NIH data science priorities. The current RFI is issued to obtain public input on goals and priorities for NLM’s next strategic plan.

    Planning Panel Meetings

    Panels of outside experts will provide insights and recommendations around each of the four planning themes. A meeting of each panel will be held at NLM. The meeting dates are as follows:

    Role of NLM in Advancing Biomedical Discovery and Translational Science
    Chair: Arthur Levine, University of Pittsburgh
    March 1–2, 2017

    Role of NLM in Advancing Data Science, Open Science, and Biomedical Informatics
    Chair: Russ Altman, Stanford University
    March 14-15, 2017

    Role of NLM in Supporting the Public’s Health: Clinical Systems, Public Health Systems and Services, and Personal Health
    Chair: Suzanne Bakken, Columbia University
    April 4-5, 2017

    Role of NLM in Building Collections to Support Discovery and Health in the 21st Century
    Chair: Patricia Thibodeau, Duke University
    April 19-20, 2017

    Planning Committee

    Development of the strategic plan is coordinated by a strategic planning subcommittee of the NLM Board of Regents in conjunction with the NLM Office of Health Information Programs Development.  The Board subcommittee members and NLM Staff are listed below:

    Masys, Daniel R., M.D. (Co-Chair)
    University of Washington School of Medicine

    Taylor, Jill, Ph.D. (Co-Chair)
    Wadsworth Center
    New York State Department of Health

    Greenes, Robert A., M.D., Ph.D.
    Arizona State University

    Horvitz, Eric, M.D., Ph.D.
    Microsoft Research

    Olds, James, Ph.D.
    Directorate For Biological Sciences 
    National Science Foundation

    Martin, Sandra, M.S.L.S.
    Shiffman Medical Library 
    Wayne State University

    NLM Office of Health Information Programs Development

    Huerta, Michael F., Ph.D.
    Associate Director for Program Development
    National Library of Medicine

    Rapp, Barbara A., Ph.D.
    Deputy Director, Office of Health Information Programs Development
    National Library of Medicine

    Contact Information

    For questions regarding the new strategic plan, please contact NLM staff at:  NLMStrategicPlanning

    18-Month Extension of Honduras and Nicaragua for Temporary Protected Status

    Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano announced the extension of the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designations for Honduras and Nicaragua for 18 months each – through July 5, 2013. See the two links to the right under „Related Links” for more specific information for each country.

    On November 4, 2011, USCIS published Federal Register notices (Honduras, Nicaragua) that provide additional guidance on:

    • Re-registration eligibility requirements
    • Fees and procedures
    • When to file applications

    Please continue to visit www.uscis.gov/tps for the latest information about filing for TPS and to learn more about the TPS application process.

    Temporary Protected Status Extended for Salvadorans

    Re-registration Open Until March 12, 2012

    Released Jan. 10, 2012

    WASHINGTON—Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano has extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for eligible nationals of El Salvador for an additional 18 months, beginning March 10, 2012, and ending Sept. 9, 2013.

    Current Salvadoran TPS beneficiaries seeking to extend their TPS status must re-register during the 60-day re-registration period that runs through March 12, 2012. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) encourages beneficiaries to register as soon as possible within the 60-day re-registration period. Although the Federal Register notice erroneously states that re-registration applications must be filed January 9, 2012 through March 9, 2012, USCIS will accept applications filed January 9, 2012 through March 12, 2012. USCIS is working to correct the public information on the re-registration filing dates.

    The 18-month extension also allows TPS re-registrants to apply for a new Employment Authorization Document (EAD). Eligible Salvadoran TPS beneficiaries who re-register on time will receive a new EAD with an expiration date of Sept. 9, 2013. USCIS recognizes that all re-registrants may not receive their new EADs until after their current EADs expire. Therefore, USCIS is extending the current TPS El Salvador EAD bearing a March 9, 2012, expiration date for an additional six months, through Sept. 9, 2012.

    To re-register, current TPS beneficiaries must submit an Application for Temporary Protected Status, Form I-821. TPS re-registrants must also submit an Application for Employment Authorization, Form I-765, regardless of whether they are applying for an EAD. Re-registrants do not need to pay the Form I-821 application fee, but they must submit the biometric services fee, or a fee waiver request, if they are age 14 or older. TPS re-registrants applying for an EAD must submit the Form I-765 application fee, or a fee waiver request.

    TPS applicants may request that USCIS waive any or all the fees by filing a Request for Fee Waiver, Form I-912, or by submitting a personal letter. Failure to submit the required filing fees or a properly documented fee waiver request will result in the rejection of the TPS application.

    Applicants can download free TPS forms from the USCIS website at http://www.uscis.gov/forms. Applicants can also request free TPS forms by calling USCIS toll-free at 1-800-870-3676.

    Additional information on TPS for El Salvador, including guidance on the application process and eligibility, is available online at http://www.uscis.gov/tps. Further details on this extension of TPS for El Salvador, including the application requirements and procedures, will appear in a Federal Register notice scheduled for publication on January 11, 2012.

    Applicants seeking information about the status of their individual cases can check My Case Status Online, or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833).

    For more information on USCIS and its programs, please visit www.uscis.govor follow us on Twitter (@uscis), YouTube (/uscis) and the USCIS blog The The Beacon.

    Temporary Protected Status Extended for Nicaraguans

    Released Nov. 4, 2011

    WASHINGTON – Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano has extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for eligible nationals of Nicaragua for an additional 18 months, beginning Jan. 6, 2012, and ending July 5, 2013.

    Current Nicaraguan TPS beneficiaries seeking to extend their TPS status must re-register during the 60-day re-registration period that runs from Nov. 4, 2011, through Jan. 5, 2012. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) encourages beneficiaries to register as soon as possible when the 60-day re-registration period begins. Applications will not be accepted before Nov. 4, 2011.

    This 18-month extension also allows TPS re-registrants to apply for a new Employment Authorization Document (EAD). Eligible Nicaraguan TPS beneficiaries who timely re-register will receive a new EAD with an expiration date of July 5, 2013. USCIS recognizes that all re-registrants may not receive their new EADs until after their current EADs expire. Therefore, USCIS is extending the current TPS Nicaragua EAD bearing a Jan. 5, 2012, expiration date for an additional six months, through July 5, 2012.

    To re-register, current TPS beneficiaries must submit an Application for Temporary Protected Status, Form I-821. TPS re-registrants must also submit an Application for Employment Authorization, Form I-765, regardless of whether they are applying for an EAD. Re-registrants do not need to pay the Form I-821 application fee, but they must submit the biometric services fee, or a fee waiver request, if they are age 14 or older. TPS re-registrants applying for an EAD must submit the Form I-765 application fee, or a fee waiver request.

    TPS applicants may request that USCIS waive any or all fees by filing a Request for Fee Waiver, Form I-912, or by submitting a personal letter. Failure to submit the required filing fees or a properly documented fee waiver request will result in the rejection of the TPS application.

    Applicants can download free TPS forms from the USCIS website at http://www.uscis.gov/forms. Applicants can also request free TPS forms by calling USCIS toll-free at 1-800-870-3676.

    Additional information on TPS for Nicaragua, including guidance on the application process and eligibility, is available online at http://www.uscis.gov/tps. Further details on this extension of TPS for Nicaragua, including the application requirements and procedures, are in a Federal Register (PDF) notice published on Nov. 4, 2011.

    Applicants seeking information about the status of their individual cases can check My Case Status Online, or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283 (TTY 1-800-767-1833).

    For more information on USCIS and its programs, please visit www.uscis.gov or follow us on Twitter (@uscis), YouTube (/uscis), and the USCIS blog The Beacon

    Salvadorans Provided With Interim Employment Authorization Documents

    March 8,  2011

    WASHINGTON—U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that some existing Salvadoran Temporary Protected Status (TPS) beneficiaries will receive interim Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) during the continued processing of their re-registration applications. USCIS mailed approximately 4,500 EADs, to be delivered no later than March 9, 2011, to Salvadorans who have not yet received a final action on their re-registration applications.

    Issuance of the interim EADs will allow TPS beneficiaries to continue working while USCIS completes the processing of their re-registration applications. The original expiration date for Salvadoran EADs was Sept. 9, 2010. USCIS automatically extended this validity period to March 9, 2011.

    USCIS has already processed over 208,000 Salvadoran re-registration applications for the current TPS extension period ending March 9, 2012. Applicants who received requests from USCIS for additional information should respond promptly within the time period listed in the notice USCIS sent to them.

    Any re-registration applicant who receives an interim EAD must still respond to any USCIS requests for additional evidence, including requests for documents, or biometric or fingerprint appointments. Applicants can check the status of their cases by visiting the USCIS website at www.uscis.gov. They can also call the USCIS National Customer Service Center toll-free number at 1-800-375-5283.

    For more information on USCIS and its programs, visit www.uscis.gov.
     

    Transition Period for Streamlining N-Form Processing Ends Dec. 2, 2011

    On Oct. 19, 2011, a USCIS Update was issued announcing processing improvements for certain naturalization and citizenship forms. USCIS has centralized intake of Forms N-336, N-600 and N-600K to the Phoenix Lockbox facility. The Dallas Lockbox facility will handle the Form N-300. This change streamlines the way forms are processed, accelerates the collection and deposit of fees and improves the consistency of our intake process.

    This is a reminder that impacted forms received at local and district offices after Dec. 2, 2011, will no longer be forwarded to the appropriate USCIS Lockbox facility. Beginning Dec. 5, impacted forms received locally will be returned to the individual with instructions on how to re-file at a designated USCIS Lockbox facility.

    USCIS has updated the information on our N-Form Web pages regarding filing forms at a Lockbox to clearly identify this change in procedure. Please carefully read the form instructions before filing your form to ensure that you are filing the correct form type and edition at the correct location.